Ottawa Mayor and ‘Freedom Convoy’ agree to move trucks from residential areas

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Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson says he has reached an agreement with the management of the “Freedom Convoy” to remove the trucks from residential areas this week.

Watson’s office told Canadian advisers on Sunday it had reached an agreement through “behind-the-scenes negotiations” for the convoy to remove trucks blocking residential streets, according to CTV News.

Freedom Convoy protesters gather near the Buffalo Peace Bridge.
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Freedom Convoy protesters gather near the Buffalo Peace Bridge.
(John M. Mantel)

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“We have developed a plan to consolidate our protest efforts around Parliament Hill,” Freedom Convoy President Tamara Lich said in a letter to Watson, adding that the Freedom Convoy board ” agreed with the request to ease the pressure on residential areas and that organizers are currently working to get truckers to “buy in”.

“The Freedom Convoy Board agrees with your request to reduce pressure on residents and businesses in the City of Ottawa,” Lich wrote. “We have developed a plan to consolidate our protest efforts around Parliament Hill. We will be working hard over the next 24 hours to get truckers on board. We hope to begin repositioning our trucks on Monday.”

the "freedom convoy" expression

The “Freedom Convoy” demonstration
(Fox News Digital/Lisa Bennatan)

Watson had written to Lich to say residents were “exhausted and nervous” and that lockdowns “were teetering on the brink of permanent closure” for some businesses.

“I do not believe that these adverse effects on our community and its people were the intended consequences of your protest,” Watson wrote.

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Watson said he wanted to see “clear evidence” that the trucks are moved from residential streets by Monday and will meet with convoy organizers if they meet certain conditions.

First, they “must remove all trucks from residential areas south of Wellington Street and all other residential areas including Market, Ottawa Baseball Stadium on Coventry, etc.”

Second, they must “commit to not backfilling residential areas currently occupied by trucks, other vehicles and/or protesters.”

Third, they must “undertake not to move the convoy of trucks, vehicles and/or protesters to other residential areas of the City of Ottawa.”

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The ‘convoy’, which blocked major roads and border crossings into Canada for 17 days, said its initial protest of 1,600 trucks had grown to 36,000 in the first week, although the washington post brings the number closer to 8,000. The cause has garnered international attention and support, possibly with a protest by American truckers departure this weekend in Los Angeles around the Super Bowl, the Department of Homeland Security announced.

Protesters stand on a trailer carrying logs as truckers and supporters take part in a convoy to protest coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccination mandates for cross-border truck drivers in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada , January 29, 2022.

Protesters stand on a trailer carrying logs as truckers and supporters take part in a convoy to protest coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccination mandates for cross-border truck drivers in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada , January 29, 2022.
(REUTERS/Patrick Doyle/File Photo)

In a report job to Facebook on January 26, Canadian truckers made their demands clear, which they tied to personal freedoms against government excesses: Truckers demanded in the letter that the Canadian government remove vaccination mandates and end all government-backed digital tracking platform, COVID-19 vaccine passport and contact tracing programs.

Fox News’ Peter Aitken contributed to this report

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