A Canadian court has granted an injunction to stop people from honking horns in Ottawa’s city centre.
The ruling targets Canadian truckers who have been occupying the capital for more than a week to protest coronavirus restrictions, calling themselves the “Freedom Convoy”.
The application for the 10-day injunction was part of a class-action lawsuit launched on behalf of residents, who have described the noise from late-night honking as unbearable.
Image: A barber cutting hair as truckers and their supporters continue to protest COVID-19 mandates
The request alleges that blasting air horns and train horns “incessantly” was a key tactic that was “organised and planned” by demonstrators to cause “serious discomfort and inconvenience” to residents.
The so-called Freedom Convoy was sparked by the introduction last month of a new rule that all truckers must be vaccinated to cross the US-Canada border, but the protests have grown to express anger about ongoing COVID restrictions.
Police intensified their efforts to shut down the protest on Monday, seizing thousands of litres of fuel and removing an oil tanker.
“We are turning up the heat in every way we possibly can,” Ottawa police chief Peter Sloly told reporters, days after he said there may not be a “policing solution” to the occupation.
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“We are asking for a major push of resources to come in the next 72 hours.”
He said the number of people at the blockades is dropping, with 1,000 trucks and 5,000 protesters counted this weekend.
This is down from 3,000 trucks and 10,000 to 15,000 protesters the weekend before.
The protests, which have included some Confederate and Nazi flags, have been largely peaceful.
The police chief also hailed their efforts to restricting money going to the protesters, which included the shut down of a GoFundMe page that meant “$10m are no longer accessible to the demonstrators”.
“There are other funding avenues that we continue to aggressively go after through intelligence information, coordination with financial institutions and all three levels of government,” he said.
“We will be relentless in pursuing the funding that has enabled this demonstration to continue to this point.”
Image: A protester seen waving flags in Ottawa on 31 January. Pic: AP
A community kitchen, portable saunas and bouncy castles for children have been among the supplies that have sustained demonstrators – paid partly by supporters in the US.
Many Republican politicians have publicly supported the protesters, including former president Donald Trump, who called Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau a “far-left lunatic” who has “destroyed Canada with insane COVID mandates”.
The protests spread to other large Canadian cities over the weekend, including Toronto.
Source : Sky News