Jan 30, 2022

By Steve Kee

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For a second day, Ottawa residents are being told to avoid travelling downtown, due to the convoy of trucks and cars protesting vaccine mandates and COVID-19 restrictions.

Police say many streets are impassable, while others have been shut down as authorities try to mitigate the impacts of the gridlock on residents and businesses.

It’s not clear when the convoy plans to end the park-in protest as some drivers have vowed not to move their vehicles until all their demands are met.

While there have been no reports of violence,┬áDefence Minister Anita Anand says the behaviour of some protesters in Ottawa seen jumping and dancing on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and the National War Memorial is “ beyond reprehensible.”

A video posted on Twitter by Steven Thornton, director general at the Department of National Defence, shows people pumping their arms and chanting “Freedom” at the war monument including one person apparently standing atop the tomb.

The Terry Fox Memorial Sculpture near Parliament Hill was also defaced, with protesters adding an inverted Canadian flag and a sign reading “mandate freedom.”

The Terry Fox Foundation responded online, saying the young cancer patient who ran across Canada in 1980 to raise money for research believed in science, and gave his life to help others.

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