Trucks roll into Ottawa for protest against Canada’s vaccine mandates

Trucks rolled into Canada’s capital Ottawa on Saturday to stage what police say will be a massive protest against Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s COVID-19 vaccine mandates in front of parliament on a frigid winter day.

The so-called “Freedom Convoy” – coming from east and west – started out as a rally against a vaccine requirement for cross-border truckers https://www.reuters.com/markets/commodities/canada-resists-pressure-drop-vaccine-mandate-cross-border-truckers-2022-01-09, but has turned into a demonstration against government overreach during the pandemic with a strong anti-vaccination streak.

Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino told the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. (CBC) on Friday that some of the protesters have expressed “flagrant extremism,” including calling for the violent overthrow of the government.

Trudeau told the Canadian Press on Friday he was worried about the protest turning violent. Earlier this week he said the convoy represented a “small fringe minority” who do not represent the views of Canadians.

On Saturday the CBC said Trudeau and his family have left the home where they live in downtown Ottawa due to security concerns and he is working from another location. His office would not confirm the report.

About 90% of Canada’s cross-border truckers and 77% of the population have had two COVID vaccination shots.

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