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Canadian police may need military aid to end downtown occupation, chief says

The ongoing protest by Canadian truckers over Covid-19 health restrictions is now an “unlawful” occupation of the country’s capital, Ottawa officials said Wednesday.

“We’re looking at every single option, including military aid,” Ottawa’s police chief Peter Sloly said during a briefing.

Sloy highighted the fact that such a request for help would be rare and that he could only recall the military being called in to quell civil disobedience twice in the last century. A spokesperson for Canada’s defense minister said later Wednesday there are “no plans” for such involvement.

“The Canadian Armed Forces are not involved in law enforcement in this situation,” Daniel Minden, spokesperson for Defence Minister Anita Anand, said in a statement.

Though the number of trucks and protesters in the city has dwindled, Sloly warned residents he expects more will return to the capital by the weekend. During a community briefing, Sloly said his police service could not realistically stop thousands of protesters or hundreds of trucks and cars from entering Ottawa.

“There is no lawful authority to seal a city, there’s no practical capability to seal a city of this size,” Sloly said, noting it would take a police force of 50,000 to even attempt it. Sloly also claimed that US money and organizers were involved in the so-called “Freedom Convoy” protest.

“We are now aware of a significant element from the United States that have been involved in the funding, the organizing and the demonstrating. They have converged on our city and there are plans for more to come,” Sloly claimed, adding, “The longer this goes on, the more I’m convinced there may not be a police solution to this demonstration.”

A GoFundMe page for the “Freedom Convoy” had raised nearly $8 million US before being paused by the company, saying it required more information from the organizer of the fundraiser.

ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH 

MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE

PHOTO CREDITS: YAHOO NEWS

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Paul, 37, is from Scotland in the UK, but currently lives and works in Bangkok. Paul has worked in different industries such as telemarketing, retail, hospitality, farming, insurance, and teaching, where he works now. He teaches at an all-girls High School in Bangkok. “It’s a lot of work, but I love my job.” Paul has an active interest in politics. His reason for writing for FBA is to offer people the facts and allow them to make up their own minds. Whilst he believes opinion columns have their place, it is also important that people can have accurate news with no bias.

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