Public/Global Health

Trudeau invokes emergency powers to end trucker protests

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Monday invoked emergency powers of his office in an effort to end the ongoing trucker anti-coronavirus vaccine protests, The Associated Press reported.

By evoking Canada’s Emergencies Act, which allows the federal government broad powers to restore order, Trudeau allows the use of military power to disrupt the protests. 

Canada officials also threatened to tow away vehicles at the protest to keep essential services running, freeze truckers’ personal and corporate bank accounts and suspend the insurance on their rigs, according to the AP. 

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland said at a news conference that the government will broaden its anti-money-laundering regulation in the hope to target crowdfunding sites that are being used to support the protests. 

“Consider yourselves warned,” Freeland said. “Send your rigs home.”

Truckers and their allies have been holding demonstrations in Ottawa for more than two weeks in protest against COVID-19 vaccine mandates in Canada. 

Demonstrators have also blocked various U.S.-Canadian border crossings in their protests, including the Ambassador Bridge, which connects Windsor, Ontario, to Detroit. 

The Ambassador Bridge was reopened on Sunday after authorities arrested a dozen demonstrators causing the road blockage. 

Trudeau did not indicate when the new protests crackdowns will begin but said that emergency measures will be “will be time-limited, geographically targeted, as well as reasonable and proportionate to the threats they are meant to address,” the AP noted.

Tags anti-vaccine protest anti-vaxx Canada Coronavirus coronavirus pandemic coronavirus vaccine COVID-19 COVID-19 pandemic Justin Trudeau Ottawa

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