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Canada 'Set a deadline' to dismantle rail blockades, Legault tells Trudeau

18:35  19 february  2020
18:35  19 february  2020 Source:   montrealgazette.com

CN Rail: 'significant' parts of Canadian rail network will close if blockades remain

  CN Rail: 'significant' parts of Canadian rail network will close if blockades remain CN Rail: 'significant' parts of Canadian rail network will close if blockades remainCN says more than 150 freight trains have been halted since Thursday evening, when demonstrators set up blockades in British Columbia and Ontario in solidarity with opponents of the Coastal GasLink pipeline project that crosses the traditional territory of the Wet'suwet'en First Nation in northwestern British Columbia.

Blockades in support of the Wet'suwet'en across the country have cut both passenger and freight rail services, including GO Transit services between Toronto and Barrie which were affected on Saturday. CN obtained a court injunction to end the demonstration near Belleville on Feb.

The blockades pose a delicate challenge for Trudeau , who says one of his main priorities is to improve relations with Canada’s marginalized and impoverished indigenous population. Quebec Premier Francois Legault on Wednesday demanded Trudeau come up with a timetable to end the blockades .

a person that is standing in the snow: A protest in solidarity with Wet'suwet'en anti-pipeline protesters in Kahnawake, blocking the Candiac railway line. Wenhniseri:io is one of the residents in Kahnwake on Monday February 10, 2020 supporting the anti-pipeline protestors. Dave Sidaway / Montreal Gazette ORG XMIT: 63937 A protest in solidarity with Wet'suwet'en anti-pipeline protesters in Kahnawake, blocking the Candiac railway line. Wenhniseri:io is one of the residents in Kahnwake on Monday February 10, 2020 supporting the anti-pipeline protestors. Dave Sidaway / Montreal Gazette ORG XMIT: 63937

QUEBEC — No longer excluding the use of police force, Premier François Legault has called on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to set a deadline for the dismantling of barricades crippling rail traffic in Canada.

Legault says he is not satisfied with Trudeau's response to blockades

  Legault says he is not satisfied with Trudeau's response to blockades QUEBEC — With travel and trade grinding to a halt and containers piling up in the Port of Montreal, Premier François Legault says he is not satisfied with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s handling of the blockade crisis that has paralyzed rail traffic in the country. “The situation keeps getting worse,” Legault said, arriving for question period at the legislature. “There is going to have to be action in the coming hours, in the coming days. “He (Trudeau) wants things to be done peacefully. We agree with this, but there have to be results and, for the moment, the situation has become very dramatic for the Quebec economy.

Trudeau 's spokeswoman Chantal Gagnon said Sunday the prime minister had already spoken to Gagnon did not reveal what Miller told the prime minister, and said the government would provide The Trudeau government has been criticized for not doing more to end the blockades , which have

I get it,” Trudeau told lawmakers Tuesday morning in Ottawa, where he’s facing calls to intervene in the dispute. “To the Wet’suwet’en and Mohawk nations Trudeau had planned to spend the first part of this week lobbying Caribbean leaders to back his bid for a seat on the United Nations Security Council.

Blockade organizers across Canada have said they’re acting in solidarity with those opposed to the Coastal GasLink pipeline project that crosses the traditional territory of the Wet’suwet’en First Nation near Houston, B.C.

Upping the pressure another notch , Legault said he will ask the rest of Canada’s premiers Wednesday to sign on to his idea of setting a deadline for negotiations to end, the blockades come down and, if necessary, examine the idea of launching coordinated police action so all the blockades are removed across Canada at the same time.

He said steps have to be taken “within days, not weeks,” and stressed the blockades are illegal , leaving the state of the economy in a precarious position.

“Mr. Trudeau has to set a deadline,” Legault said, arriving for question period at the legislature. “The Canadian economy is suffering and we have to listen to Canadians.

Small business owners demand an end to rail blockades, warn of consequences

  Small business owners demand an end to rail blockades, warn of consequences Small business owners demand an end to rail blockades, warn of consequencesCFIB head Dan Kelly is calling on Ottawa to work with the provinces and law enforcement to get trains back on the tracks as protests in support of Wet'suwet'en hereditary chiefs who oppose a natural gas pipeline in British Columbia enter their 14th day.

The blockade along a railway line in Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory in Ontario last week.Credit Carlos Osorio/Reuters. Looming over Mr. Trudeau and his cabinet as they looked for a solution to the blockade are memories of earlier protests by Indigenous people that turned violent.

Trudeau cancels Barbados trip amid rail blockades . There’s mounting political pressure for Trudeau to put an end to the blockades . But Trudeau shot back, arguing that Canada is not a country “where politicians get to tell the police what to do in operational matters.”

“Yes, we have to respect Indigenous people, listen to them, but we also need to listen to Canadians , to Quebecers.

“I am asking for leadership. I am asking for a deadline. So far he did not do so. We are now in this mess for two weeks so it’s time we set a deadline.”

He confirmed the government has been in touch with the Sûreté du Québec to prepare the necessary plans for some kind of action. He did not elaborate.

“We cannot exclude using police, but it has to be in coordination with every province at the same time. We have had a discussion with the SQ.”

pauthier@postmedia.com

Twitter.com/philipauthier

Related

Wet’suwet’en solidarity protesters set up new Vancouver rail blockade, violating injunction .
The blockade is the latest act of solidarity with Wet'suwet'en hereditary chiefs opposing the Coastal GasLink pipeline project through their traditional lands in northern B.C. In a statement, the group organized by Natalie Knight said it was not only protesting the actions of Coastal GasLink and RCMP, but also the various injunctions granted against solidarity protests themselves. “You cannot injunct justice," Knight said. "The use of overbroad injunctions to criminalize Indigenous land defenders and our supporters reveals the colonial foundation of Canadian law.

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