Ottawa police arrest 2 protesters as encampment at National War Memorial is removed

Ottawa police have begun removing an encampment from the National War Memorial in the nation’s capital Saturday morning.

The move comes after weeks of pressure from the public calling for the removal of the protesters.

The demonstrators — members of a group that calls itself the “Canadian Revolution” — have been squatting at the site since Canada Day, citing a wide-range of grievances with the federal Liberal government. 

The group has demanded all politicians and government officials to step down immediately, and has peddled far-right conspiracy theories.

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Security on Parliament Hill increased after reports of harassment

The memorial has acted as a base camp for the fringe group, whose members have repeatedly harassed politicians on Parliament Hill.

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Last month, video posted to social media showed Jagmeet Singh being followed down the street in front of Parliament Hill by a man who asked if the NDP leader wants to be arrested.

The man later told Singh that the next time they see each other, the two will “have a dance.”

Following the incident, the Parliamentary Protective Service said it had stepped up its presence in the area.

On Thursday, ‘no camping’ signs were erected at the National War Memorial, notifying demonstrators that they may not “occupy, reside, camp or sleep in or upon” in a public space.


Click to play video 'Remembrance Day: Trudeau, Payette among those to lay wreaths at National War Memorial'



Remembrance Day: Trudeau, Payette among those to lay wreaths at National War Memorial


Remembrance Day: Trudeau, Payette among those to lay wreaths at National War Memorial

Ottawa police told Global News the operation on Saturday began around 6 a.m., after the force received a request from Public Services and Procurement Canada to clear the site.

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According to police, three people were at the camp. One protester left, while the other two were arrested.

Police said one person was charged and released, the other refused to provide officers with their name and remains in custody.

The removal of the encampment was nearly complete by 10 a.m. ET, but police said the investigation is ongoing.

The move comes as the city prepares for a scaled-down Remembrance Day next month.

–With files from Global News’ Amanda Connolly and The Canadian Press




© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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