Tracker Convoy stays in Ottawa until the mandate is lifted, says the organizer


Ottawa — A mass of truck drivers and other protesters gathered in the Canadian capital this weekend, so protest organizers say they will stay until their demands are met.

At a press conference in Ottawa on January 30, Freedom Convoy organizer Benja Mindichter said, “It’s a waiting game right now, and patience is a virtue.”

Epoch Times Photo
Freedom Convoy organizers (LR) Chris Barber, Benjamin Dichter and Tamara Lich will speak at a press conference in Ottawa on January 30, 2022. (LiminZhou / The Epoch Times)

Dicther said trucks are designed to stay on the road for extended periods of time, often equipped with refrigerators and other equipment, and can serve as a shelter for drivers. He added that the GoFundMe campaign for the movement has raised more than $ 8.7 million as of January 30 and can fund truck drivers to stay in the city.

“They can sit for weeks or months,” he said.

He added that the convoy’s request was for the federal government to terminate COVID-19’s obligations and remove the vaccination passport requirement. He said they would ask the state government to ask the same.

“They are next to the list. We start from the top down,” Dichter said.

Freedom Convoy initially began in protest of the federal government’s request that all US-Canada cross-border truck drivers need to be vaccinated with the COVID-19 vaccine. By the time the first convoy left the west coast for Ottawa on January 23, the movement was not only against the obligation of vaccines to truck drivers, but also in protesting various COVID-19 restrictions. I was adding the voice of. ..

Epoch Times Photo
On January 29, 2022, people gather on Parliamentary Hill as a truck convoy protests COVID-19 orders and restrictions in Ottawa. (Jonathan Ren / The Epoch Times)
Epoch Times Photo
On January 29, 2022, people gather on Parliamentary Hill as a truck convoy protests COVID-19 orders and restrictions in Ottawa. (Jonathan Ren / The Epoch Times)

By Saturday, January 29, fleets and protesters from different parts of the country have arrived in Ottawa, parked trucks and vehicles on the streets of downtown, raised flags and raised signs in and around the Capitol. I did.

“Yesterday was just a great day … none of us have [ever] I’m very Canadian and I’m very proud of being very unified, “Dichter said.

“We have escaped from the quoted” nation-state “where Justin Trudeau claims we have no identity, but all Canadian cultures, our native community, our French Canadians. , People outside the West, and the Quebec community in the coastal states. And we are all on the same page and we are all part of one big family. “

As truck driver protests are gaining momentum, many media reports and politicians have associated the movement with a group of racists and white supremacists.

“While Canada cracks down on indigenous and black protesters, white supremacists get a free pass in Canada. Look at the convoy,” read one headline. Commentary At the Toronto Star.

Epoch Times Photo
Protesters participating in the convoy of tracks that oppose COVID-19’s obligations and restrictions will play a traditional First Nations drum at Parliament Hill in Ottawa on January 29, 2022. (Noé Charter / The Epoch Times)

The composition of protesters in Ottawa over the weekend was clearly diverse, with people from different backgrounds participating in the movement.

Dichter said one of his group’s messages was to prevent politicians from using identity politics to divide people.

“Whether it’s through the politics of racial identity or just through the politics of cultural identity, it’s over. We’re sick of it.”

Dicker added that many Ottawa police officers personally support protesters.

“When we talk to them, it’s great to see all the love and support they give us face-to-face. That’s great.”

Ottawa police have asked police in a nearby city for additional police to assist police in protest. A spokesperson for the Ottawa police refused to tell the Epoch Times how long expectations of continued protests would last.

Parliament will resume on Monday, January 31st. The convoy organizer said federal representatives had never met them so far.

Limin Zhou

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Limin Zhou is an Ottawa-based reporter.