Protests against anti-Covid restrictions in Canada prompted Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson to declare a state of emergency. The company confirms this among others Reuters How the protests led to an occupation and shutdown of the Canadian capital, with vehicles and tents blocking the streets. The mayor admitted that the situation was now “out of control” as the demonstrators significantly outnumbered the police. Hence the decision taken by the local government that the protests pose a threat to the safety of the residents.
A “no control” situation
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In Ottawa, the center has been occupied for more than a week by protesters against anti-Covid restrictions, Watson told local radio in the past few hours. “The situation is completely out of control now because it is the demonstrators who are making the law,” the mayor admitted. “We are losing the war, but we have to take back our city,” he added, calling the behavior of the crowd blocking the streets, including chanting and honking horns, “unacceptable.” The protesters have, among other things, vowed to continue occupying the streets until anti-Covid measures are lifted. During an emergency meeting, Ottawa Police Chief Peter Sloley protested that he did not have enough resources to permanently prevent what he called a “state of siege” and asked for “additional resources” from local government. For this, about 250 agents of the Royal Gendarmerie, a federal police force, were deployed.
The appearance of resistance
The protest lasted about 10 days and was initially sparked by Canadian truck drivers protesting the requirement of vaccinations for those crossing the US border, and has since expanded to include other Canadian cities such as Toronto. The “Freedom March” or “Freedom Convoy,” as it has been renamed, has seen some trucks arrive in Ottawa in recent days to protest policies adopted by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in front of Parliament. The protest march from Canada’s east and west began as a demonstration against mandatory vaccinations for cross-border truck drivers, but turned into a demonstration against government policies adopted during the pandemic and can now be engaged in. Thousands of supporters. Among the reasons for the protests was that Canadian nationals of trucks and drivers of trucks returning home from the United States should be fully vaccinated if they do not follow a 14-day quarantine. On the other hand, foreign truck drivers who are only partially vaccinated or not vaccinated are rejected and sent back to the United States. Trudeau, who is in solitary confinement after testing positive for Covid-19 last week, has ruled out wanting to use the military to break up the protest. According to the Prime Minister, the protest march represented only a “small minority”. That’s because, according to government sources, about 90% of Canadian cross-border truck drivers and nearly 79% of the population have received two vaccinations against Covid.
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