Canadian Prime Minister Justin TrudeauJustin Pierre James TrudeauCanada's Trudeau apologizes for vacation on first Truth and Reconciliation Day Unvaccinated Canadian government workers to be placed on unpaid leave Canada marks first 'National Day of Truth and Reconciliation' MORE was met with a shower of gravel on Monday during a campaign stop in Ontario as anti-vaccine protesters sought to pelt him with rocks in opposition of coronavirus vaccines and other measures to curb the spread of the virus.
Trudeau was wrapping up an event at a brewery based in London, Ontario, and beginning to board his campaign bus when the protesters approached him, throwing the gravel, according to The Washington Post.
The prime minister told reporters following the incident that some of the gravel “might have” hit his shoulders
“There was little bits of gravel,” he said, according to the Post. “It’s no big deal.”
This isn't the first time Trudeau has faced protests over Canada's coronavirus restrictions. Last month, he was forced to cancel a campaign event in Bolton, Ontario, after officials determined that protesters posed a threat to security.
“We all had a difficult year,” Trudeau said after that cancelation, according to the Post. “Those folks out protesting, they had a difficult year, too, and I know and I hear the anger, the frustration, perhaps the fear. … We need to meet that anger with compassion.”
On Monday, Trudeau pushed back on the protesters, noting that he would not be deterred by their actions. Within the last 36 days of Canada's federal election campaign, candidates have been targeted with racist and sexist slurs and one candidate saw their lawn signs defaced with antisemitic graffiti, the Post reported.
“There is a small fringe element in this country that is angry, that doesn’t believe in science, that is lashing out with racist, misogynistic attacks,” Trudeau said. “Canadians, the vast majority of Canadians are not represented by them. And I know [they] will not allow those voices … those anti-vaxxer mobs, to dictate how this country gets through this pandemic.”