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Ex-US envoy warns US groups about interfering


In the US, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton tweeted: “Patriotic Texans donated to Canadian truckers’ worthy cause.” Texas Senator Ted Cruz said on Fox News the Canadian “government doesn’t have the right to force you to comply to their arbitrary mandates”.

Heyman said Republicans are more publicly concerned about events in Canada than Russia.

“For some senior American politicians, patriotism means renting a mob to put a G-7 capital under siege. #GoHome” tweeted Gerald Butts, a former senior adviser to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

In Canada’s largest city, Toronto, police set up road blocks throughout downtown, preventing any protesters in trucks or cars from getting near the provincial legislature, which is near where five major hospitals are located.

And police later moved in to clear a key intersection in the city. No protest remains.

Thousands descended in Ottawa again on the weekend.

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Participants roasted hotdogs and doled out baked goods under tarps, while two men on horseback traipsed through the town, one carrying a flag in support of former US President Donald Trump.

Residents of Ottawa are furious at the nonstop blaring of horns, traffic disruption and harassment and fear no end is in sight. Ottawa’s embattled police chief is calling it a “siege” that he can’t manage.

The “freedom truck convoy” has attracted support from Trump and many Republicans.

“The Freedom Convoy is peacefully protesting the harsh policies of far left lunatic Justin Trudeau who has destroyed Canada with insane COVID mandates,” Trump said in a statement released Friday.

In Toronto a couple hundred health-care workers and supporters marched from the University of Toronto to Hospital Row just south of the legislature. They held placards reading, “free-dumb” and “N95 masks for all.”

Police officers form a line in front of counter protesters blocking a convoy of truckers opposed to COVID-19 health measures and vaccinations, in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Police officers form a line in front of counter protesters blocking a convoy of truckers opposed to COVID-19 health measures and vaccinations, in Vancouver, British Columbia.Credit:AP

Demonstrators also gathered in Quebec City, and Winnipeg, Manitoba, but they dispersed and police in those cities said they have learned lessons from Ottawa’s predicament.

Many Canadians have been outraged over the crude behaviour.

Some protesters set fireworks on the grounds of the National War Memorial late Friday. A number have carried signs and flags with swastikas last weekend and compared vaccine mandates to fascism.

A protester stands on a barricade as trucks continue to block the downtown district in protest of COVID-19 restrictions, in Ottawa, Ontario.

A protester stands on a barricade as trucks continue to block the downtown district in protest of COVID-19 restrictions, in Ottawa, Ontario.Credit:AP

Protesters have said they won’t leave until all mandates and COVID-19 restrictions are gone. They are also calling for the removal of Trudeau’s government, though it is responsible for few of the measures, most of which were put in place by provincial governments.

Reuters



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