NewsCorona demo in Canada: Premier Trudeau is brought to...

Corona demo in Canada: Premier Trudeau is brought to safety

Thousands protest against the Corona rules in Canada. Police prepare for possible violence – and get Prime Minister Trudeau to safety.

Ottawa – In the capital of Canada, thousands of people have gathered in front of Parliament to demonstrate against the Corona measures. The action, which started as a protest against mandatory vaccinations when crossing the Canada-US border, is also attracting figures from the far-right spectrum, news site CBC reports. Police prepare for possible violence while Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has been brought to safety.

On Sunday (January 23, 2022) a convoy of truck drivers started in Vancouver, about 4400 kilometers from Ottawa. The goal of the so-called “Freedom Convoy” was to draw attention to the problems of unvaccinated people in Canada who have to cross the US border for work with the trip to the capital and the subsequent protest. According to the current rules, Canadian truck drivers without a corona vaccination must go into a 14-day quarantine when returning from the USA.

Corona demonstration in Canada: Police in Ottawa are being strengthened

On the way to the capital, more and more drivers joined the convoy, which was met by thousands of other demonstrators in Ottawa on Saturday (January 29, 2022). The opponents of the Corona rules then gathered in front of the Canadian Parliament. In addition to anti-vaccination activists who have lost their jobs due to the pandemic measures, the event also attracts people from the right-wing extremist spectrum. Confederate flags were reportedly seen at the site. The center of the capital was largely blocked, as reported by the CBC. The police expected up to 10,000 participants before the unregistered protest. There is no official information about the actual numbers.

According to police reports, the Corona protest in front of the Parliament of Canada was generally peaceful on Saturday. A mall in Ottawa was forced to close when it was overrun by protesters violating the mask requirement. A beer can was also thrown at a journalist. While organizers condemn any form of violence, there are voices among the extremist attendees calling for just that, public broadcaster CBC reports. The police in Ottawa is therefore being reinforced by emergency services from other cities.

Canada: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau evacuated because of Corona demos

Recently re-elected Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau and his family also evacuated their home about four kilometers from the site of the protest. The move followed a warning that protesters could show up at politicians’ homes. Trudeau’s exact whereabouts are unknown.

The protest has parallels to the storming of the U.S. Capitol in January 2021. At that time, too, demonstrators had gathered in front of the seat of Congress, with the gathering eventually escalating and people entering the Capitol. The incident in the US involved supporters of Donald Trump. Trump himself welcomed the protest in Canada, according to news site CTV News. At an event on Saturday, the former president said attendees “are doing more to defend American freedom than our own politicians.”

Corona: Thousands demonstrate in Canada – Trudeau speaks of “marginal minority”

Trudeau, on the other hand, described the unvaccinated truck drivers on Friday as a “small marginal minority” who did not represent the majority of people in Canada. The industry association Canadian Truckin Alliance also criticized the protests and announced that the vast majority of Canadian truckers had been vaccinated against Corona. Canada has an overall vaccination rate of 90 percent of adults.

The protest in front of the Canadian Parliament is expected to last at least the weekend but could last longer, police told CBC. The organizers repeatedly said that they will not go until they get what they want.

Strict corona measures do not only apply at the border: The province of Quebec in Canada has introduced a fee for unvaccinated people. (vbu/afp)

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