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Trudeau to Invoke War Powers Act Against Freedom Convoy Protesters; Police Begin 'Sabotaging' Truckers' Heavy Equipment

Published: February 14, 2022 | Print Friendly and PDF

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is planning to invoke the "Emergencies Act" in a bid to shut down nationwide peaceful protests against covid mandates.

From Trudeau plans to invoke Emergencies Act in response to protests: sources:

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has told his caucus he plans on invoking the never-before-used Emergencies Act to give the federal government extra powers to handle the protests across the country, according to sources.

Those sources, who were not authorized to speak publicly, said the prime minister will inform the premiers of his decision this morning.

The Emergencies Act, which replaced the War Measures Act in the 1980s, defines a national emergency as a temporary "urgent and critical situation" that "seriously endangers the lives, health or safety of Canadians and is of such proportions or nature as to exceed the capacity or authority of a province to deal with it."

It gives powers to the prime minister to respond to four different types of emergency scenarios: public welfare (natural disasters, disease), public order (civil unrest), international emergencies and war emergencies.

The act grants cabinet the ability to "take special temporary measures that may not be appropriate in normal times" to cope with an emergency and the resulting fallout during an "urgent and critical situation."

It gives the government extraordinary — but time limited — powers. The act is still contingent on Parliament's approval and subject to the protections of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Jack Lindsay, an associate professor in the applied disaster and emergency studies department at Brandon University in Manitoba, said one of the first steps is for the government to show that the state of affairs constitutes an emergency.

"They're gonna have to basically prove that first hurdle, that it is a national emergency," he said.

"He's basically going to be arguing that these truckers are basically creating a threat to the security of Canada."

Under the act, the government is prohibited from taking control of police forces, said Lindsay.

"They do have the grounds to regulate and prohibit public assembly and travel and then regulate or prohibit the use of specific properties," he said.

"I suppose they could put out regulations about where semi-trailers are allowed to park overnight, for example. They can designate protected places like the Ambassador's Bridge or something."

The government can also order or direct any person to render services with compensation, said Lindsay, which could in theory be used to tow trucks blocking streets downtown.

In a meeting with the Liberal caucus on Monday morning, Trudeau said there were no plans to deploy the military, according to the sources.

He wants to force tow truck operators to tow these protesters' trucks against their will.

Doug Ford is ramping up the threats as well:

The RCMP "sabotaged" three excavators parked on private land by having their "wires cut," their "filters removed" and "spray foam" put up their fuel lines.

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