As authorities threatened to arrest roadblocks in the capital, protest organizers on Wednesday urged supporters to flock to Ottawa and make their gatherings so crowded that police were unable to clear them. canopy.
Changing tactics, the organizers held a fairly standard and controlled press conference at a Sheraton hotel, trying to make their case for the journalists covering them and for the Canadians. normal. In the past, they have mainly spoken to pro-right-wing media outlets, or at press conferences with supporters crowding and threatening reporters with questions.
“We are concerned that the government will order the police to use violence against peaceful protesters,” said Vincent Gircys, who identifies himself as a former police officer.
“Having more Canadians here will prevent the police from carrying out government orders,” he added.
Protesters protested against government-mandated pandemic restrictions, and many of them challenged not being vaccinated and being exposed.
Their press conference came hours after Ottawa police issued a notice asking people who had been paralyzed in parts of the city to leave, telling them they had committed a crime by blocking roads and making threats. arrest them, although the timing remains unclear.
A former police officer, Daniel Bulford, said he served in the armed forces and left the Royal Canadian Mounted Police because the agency required Covid-19 vaccinations. He described himself at the press conference as representing veterans who protest “when you force your citizens to obey orders that make no sense”.
“I urge all veterans to give your voice to this movement so the rest of Canada can see that this is wrong,” he said.
He refuted reports of vandalism by protesters, insisting that they were peaceful.
Speakers at the press conference called for an order to disband an illegal violation of their right to peaceful protest. But Tom Marazzo, a spokesman for the protests, said that if a crackdown and arrests occurred, the response would be peaceful.
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/16/world/canada/organizers-call-for-protests-to-become-too-large-for-police-to-break-up.html Organizers called for the Ottawa rally to become too large for police to clear.