HomeBusinessThousands protest COVID mandates and restrictions in Ottawa

Thousands protest COVID mandates and restrictions in Ottawa

OTTAWA, Ontario (AP) — Thousands of protesters gathered in Canada’s capital on Saturday to protest vaccine mandates, masks and lockdowns.

The sounds of honking horns echoed round Ottawa’s downtown core. A convoy of vehicles and automobiles parked in round Parliament Hill with some parking on the grounds of the National War Memorial earlier than police requested them to maneuver.

“Parking on this sacred ground that includes the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier was a sign of complete disrespect,” Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson tweeted.

Some in contrast COVID restrictions to fascism and made use of Nazi symbols on the other way up Canadian flags. One truck carried a Confederate flag whereas many carried expletive-laden indicators focusing on Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

David Santos mentioned he got here from Montreal as a result of he believes the vaccine mandates are usually not health-related however what he calls a “control thing” by governments.

The convoy of truckers and others prompted police to organize for the opportunity of violence and the federal government to warn towards escalating rhetoric linked to the demonstration. A high Parliament safety official suggested lawmakers to lock their doorways amid reviews their personal houses could also be focused.

Some the truckers are, in half, protesting a brand new rule that took impact Jan. 15 requiring truckers coming into Canada be absolutely immunized towards the coronavirus. The United States has imposed the identical requirement on truckers coming into that nation.

The Canadian Trucking Alliance mentioned it seems quite a few protesters haven’t any connection to the trucking trade, including they’ve a separate agenda to push. The alliance mentioned in an announcement that the trade should adapt and adjust to this mandate, noting the overwhelming majority of drivers have completed so.

The organizers of the protest have known as for Trudeau and all provincial governments to remove all COVID-19 restrictions and vaccine mandates. The doc fails to say truckers in any respect.

Some opposition Conservative lawmakers served espresso to the protesters. The protest has additionally attracted help from Donald Trump Jr. and some Fox News personalities.

“The confederate flag and what it represents is offensive to most Americans and should be to Canadians as well,” former U.S. Ambassador to Canada Bruce Heyman tweeted.

The Parliamentary Protective Service expects as many as 10,000 protesters as a part of a weekend-long rally. Though the goal of the protest for some to oppose vaccine mandates for truck drivers crossing the Canada-U.S. border, many attendees mentioned that’s solely a small a part of their calls for.

“I’m locked into my own country right now,” mentioned Tom Pappin, who got here from simply exterior Ottawa. “I can’t go on a holiday. I can’t go to a restaurant, I can’t go bowling. I can’t go to a movie. You know, these are things that it’s just gotten out of control.”

The 52-year-old mentioned the gathering wouldn’t probably be a someday protests, saying that attendees are prone to keep parked by Parliament till vaccine mandates are lifted. Some protesters have mentioned they wouldn’t depart till public-health restrictions are lifted or Trudeau is compelled out as prime minister.

While the federal authorities has imposed a vaccine mandate for federally regulated employees and on the Canada-U.S. border, nearly all COVID-19 restrictions fall to provincial jurisdiction. Restaurants and gyms are about to reopen in Ontario this coming week.

Phil Haggart was among the many group to counter-protest the convoy’s message, saying he wished to indicate that there have been voices in favor of public well being measures to sluggish the unfold of the virus. “Masks are important, vaccines are important, and mandates are important only because we need them to stay alive and not fill our hospitals up,” he mentioned as protesters rang cow bells shut by.

For more information, visit The Washington Times COVID-19 resource page.

Copyright © 2022 The Washington Times, LLC.

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