Canada Truckers: Ottawa Police Arrests ‘volatile’ protesters

Ottawa police have said “volatile” and “determined” demonstrators remain in Canada’s capital after nearly two weeks of a trucker-led anti-vaccine mandate protest.

Ottawa is under a state of emergency after protestors blockaded the city centre with trucks and cars.

Police have seized thousands of litres of fuel in recent days.

Up to 25% of the vehicles contain children who could be at risk during operations, police said on Tuesday.
The so-called Freedom Convoy began on 9 January in western Canada, as truckers protested against a rule that requires them to be vaccinated against Covid-19 to cross the US-Canada border.

The demonstrations have morphed to include anger at Covid restrictions and at Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government generally.

Though the rally has been mostly peaceful, police have expressed concern about extremist rhetoric coming from far-right groups among the protesters.

As well as reported racial and homophobic abuse, some danced on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at the National War Memorial.

Nearly 80 criminal investigations have been opened in relation to the protests, including for alleged hate crimes and property damage.

Some two dozen people have been arrested.

One officer was reportedly attacked while attempting to seize fuel from a protest truck.

Speaking to press on Tuesday, deputy police chief Steve Bell said: “Our message to the demonstrators remains the same: Don’t come. If you do, there will be consequences.”

He said police had found about 100 trucks with children in them and had contacted the Children’s Aid Society over concerns about the noise, fumes and hygiene in the convoy.


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