Ottawa police have begun arresting protesters and dragging vehicles in an attempt to disperse “freedom convoy” asking for their rights for weeks and to which Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to declare a state of emergency across the country, denying the protestors for their rights.
By Friday evening, at least 100 people had been arrested, and at least 21 vehicles had been towed, including all that blocked one of the city’s main roads, as police used emergency force approved by Trudeau earlier this week.
Police “continue to push for control of our roads,” the city’s interim police chief Steve Bell said on Friday afternoon, adding: “We will work day and night until this is done.”
Bell said one policeman was slightly injured but no protesters were injured.
Trumpets sounded as hundreds of police officers, some with guns, some with shields and gas masks, entered a protest camp near Parliament Hill this morning.
A police plane was flying high when more police officers on horseback and at least three armed vehicles arrived at the scene.
Police were wearing a gray tired ride on two trucks while taking the first two camp near Parliament. Warnings from police loudspeakers were heard: “You must go! You will be arrested! ”
Police headers were clear on Thursday that they were preparing to end the blockage and removed more than 300 trucks, van and other vehicles closed the city from the end of January.
Bell warned that “action [is] near,” and two key protest leaders were arrested Thursday night. Chris Barber and Tamara Lich will face charges of conspiracy and conspiracy to commit atrocities.
Some key people arrested Friday: Pat King was arrested during a Facebook Live broadcast. BJ Dichter, another prominent figure in the organization, told his supporters it was “time to go” and urged Ottawa police to allow drivers to take out their vehicles.
For the first time since the protests began, there have been more police forces than protesters, allowing the police to control parts of the protest camps. The huge increase in attendance allowed them to use more power, including smashing car windows and pulling drivers.
Some protesters contacted the weapons and refused to move as the police line pushed forward; others sang the national anthem O Canada! He also said that it should not be fought when others quarreled with the police and insulted them.
“You bad guys,” shouted one woman.
But the police action was welcomed by some locals who complained of harassment and intimidation, and received a court order to stop the trumpets of truck drivers.
“I live down here, and I’ve never been able to find anything, including my pharmacy, for three difficult weeks!” another passing by shouting at the protesters. “And now you’re going home, thank you. Because you lost! ”
A number of children were present during the riots in the protest camp, despite police warnings that street parents should receive alternative care when facing arrest.
“Pictures of these indifferent parents who put their children first in police incidents are indescribable,” on Twitter Cindy Blackstock, head of the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society. “It is very sad about these children and I hope they have a loving caregiver who will take care of them b / c rather than critical questions about parental judgment.”
As police pushed each other from the south of the camp, protesters grabbed snow shovels and began building temporary barricades.
“What a wonderful day to see the snow cleared!” shouted one.
Police said the “red area” during the city on Thursday with 100 experiments in the entire region as a way to prevent protesters from entering the people’s locals in the weekend. They also closed key areas for access roads to the city.
The House of Commons of Canada canceled its operation on Friday, with spokesman Anthony Rota warning lawmakers not to “stay out of town until further notice” due to the expected police action.
With temperatures with a windchill around -23C (-9.4F), protesters had begun their day digging up their vehicles due to heavy snowfall at night. Tensions were high in the protesters as scores of protesters lit fires and watched intently as the number of police officers grew.
Some protesters in the barracks were rude, convinced that the police would not leave the camp.
“I looked at the police and they looked cold. They do not want to be here, ”said Zack, an Ottawa resident holding a“ We Ain’t Leaving ”flag.
One protester, wearing a display jacket, shouted “Freedom!” as he pulled a 12-gallon diesel cart passing by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police team toward the blockade.
Ottawa police issued a stern warning on Twitter: “DEMONSTRATORS: You must go. You should stop other illegal activities and immediately remove your vehicle and / or property from all illegal protest sites. Anyone inside the area of an illegal protest could be arrested. ”
As the day progressed, trucks gradually moved away from the blockade. Large trucks also arrived near the camps as police arrested the drivers and took control of the vehicles.
The tow truck industry has long resisted calls to transport trucks, fearing that their companies may be in danger of being targeted by convoy fans. Most of the drivers in Ottawa on Friday were wearing masks or balaclavas and drawings of their company trucks were covered.
On Monday, Trudeau became the first prime minister to implement the Emergency Act, giving his government the power to ban certain gatherings, pull over vehicles, suspend driver’s licenses and suspend bank accounts.
The encampment in the capital represented the movement’s last stronghold after three weeks of demonstrations and blockades that shut down several border crossings into the US and triggered a political crisis.
The demonstrations initially focused on a vaccine requirement for truckers entering Canada, but some protesters’ demands escalated to the repeal of all Covid health measures, and even the toppling of the Trudeau government.
Fringe elements, including far-right activists, nationalist groups and conspiracy theorists, have played a central role in the protests from the start, and officials had expressed concern about the potential for violence.
Officers had hesitated to move against the protesters, partly due to fears that some were armed. But the occupation was stoking growing tensions with local residents who complained of harassment and intimidation, and obtained a court order to stop the truckers’ incessant horn honking.
The protesters represent a small minority in Canada. The country has one of the highest rates of full vaccination anywhere in the world, with more than 80% of people covered.
The protests also have inspired similar convoys in France, New Zealand and the Netherlands.