Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Canada PM Justin Trudeau Declares Emergency To End Truck Blockades

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Canada PM Justin Trudeau has declared a public order emergency for the first time in the country’s history to support provinces in ending the ongoing blockades.

Speaking to the media, Trudeau said that he invoked the Emergencies Act to give the federal government extra and “temporary” powers to handle the issue, adding the move targets to those areas in need, not the whole country.

The Emergencies Act, which replaced the War Measures Act in the 1980s, gives the government special powers to respond to emergency situations impacting public welfare, public order and foreign or war emergencies.

“It is now clear that there are serious challenges to law enforcement’s ability to effectively enforce the law. This is about keeping Canadians safe, protecting people’s jobs and restoring confidence in our institutions,” he said.

The Prime Minister stated that the Act will ensure that critical services, such as towing services to remove trucks, are provided.

It will also be utilised to safeguard essential infrastructure from blockades, such as borders and airports, and the government will allow the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to enforce municipal bylaws, he said, dismissing the use of military force.

The measures include giving banks the power to suspend or freeze accounts of blockade supporters without a court order, and forcing platforms and cryptocurrencies to follow anti-money laundering and terrorist financing laws, as the truck convoy protest organisers have secured millions of dollars from crowdfunding sites.

Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland warned at a press conference that corporations whose trucks are involved in illegal blockades will have their corporate bank accounts seized and their insurance cancelled.

Thousands of Canadian truckers and allies came on Ottawa in late January to protest the government’s demand for truckers crossing the border into the United States, which has the similar regulation.

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