Canada’s Trudeau uses emergency powers to crack down on protests

OTTOWA, Ontario (AP) — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau used his emergency powers on Monday to crack down on protesting truckers and other residents angry over Canada’s COVID-19 restrictions.

Trudeau is planning to tow away trucker’s rigs, suspend their insurance, and freeze personal and corporate bank accounts.

“These blockades are illegal, and if you are still participating, the time to go home is now,” He said.

With Canada’s Emergencies Act, the federal government is given broad powers to restore order.  This grants the government the ability to declare the Ottawa protest illegal and authorization to make greater use of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

Trudeau did not set a date as to when these policies would be put in place but assured that they will happen.

For weeks, hundreds of protesters in trucks and other vehicles have blocked the streets of Ottawa protesting vaccine mandates for truckers and other COVID-19 policies. Members of the group called Freedom Convoy have blocked different U.S.-Canadian border crossings like the Ambassador Bridge that connects Windsor, Ontario to Detroit.

This protest has inspired similar actions in France, New Zealand the Netherlands. U.S. authorities have said that similar events may take place in the United States.

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