On Rideau Street in downtown Ottawa, after police handed out leaflets warning protesters to leave or face arrest, a group of them chatted with officers, asking if they had to follow up or not.
When the officers said they had no intention of arresting them, one protester read aloud from the leaflet, which said the protesters had broken the law.
“So are you going to arrest us?” he asks. “It says you should arrest us. If you were ordered, would you follow orders? ”
With the Ottawa police issuing a new request for protesters to withdraw immediately, just days after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau declared a national emergency, some protesters are coordinating the response. to the small actions of officers who frequently appeared in their garrison areas. Through a sequence of text messages, they shared the locations where the police were spotted and then quickly came to confront them.
The meetings were more serious than aggressive, as protesters tried to explain their views and questioned officers about law enforcement plans.
The trucks have swept away some residential streets, especially in the past few days, though not others. Metcalfe Street’s portable toilets have been dismantled and are now mostly located on Wellington Street, under an agreement the protesters signed with the mayor.
Dennis Brown, 57, walks around with his own piece of paper, calling for the arrest of not protesters but politicians. He said he quit his job as a technology service provider for the Inuit, because he didn’t want to comply with the requirements that travelers must be vaccinated.
Andrew Broe, 52, a truck driver from Trenton, Ontario, received a police alert and promptly threw it into the fire he was tending to in a box to keep warm on a side street. outside the Parliament building.
“It was partly encouraging,” he said of the flyer. “They are pulling in straws trying to erase a peaceful protest.” As taxpayers, he said, the protesters own the road, but if the police move in, he won’t resist.
While he was talking, he received a message from the organization’s leadership about a text thread specifically for truckers. It urges calm, unity and resilience to deliver a “message we need the world to hear”.
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/16/world/canada/protesters-in-ottawa-are-on-alert-after-police-order-them-to-disperse.html Protesters in Ottawa are on alert after police ordered them to disperse.