The Canadian federal government has lifted the Emergencies Act but questions remain about what might be the long-term effects of invoking such extraordinary measures to quell protests.
The financial measures carried out under the act, which included directing banks to freeze some protesters’ accounts, have been a particular target for criticism and one watcher warns the damage done will linger long after the initial protests are finished.
Financial intelligence expert Kim Manchester says that banks will likely keep tracking those individuals flagged by the RCMP and their names could end up on private-sector third-party databases that banks rely on to mitigate anti-money laundering and terrorist financing.
Banks and other financial institutions were also directed to look into whether any clients seemed to be supporting the protests, and those monitoring actions could well continue, he said.
On a larger scale, Manchester says that the actions set a dangerous precedent of how government decides to go after protests, and leaves open the door to using the same tactics in the future.
He says allies will also be watching how the federal government used Fintrac and compare the actions against the protesters to the relatively few resources directed to financial crime generally.
“There are lasting consequences to this. You don’t just pull out a fountain pain and sign a piece of paper and hope that it all goes away. It doesn’t work like that,” said Manchester.
The last big rigs were towed Sunday out of Canada’s capital, where the streets were quiet for the first time in almost a month after a massive police operation ended a drawn-out siege by protesters opposing Covid health rules
A major clean-up was underway in Ottawa‘s snowy downtown, where police in riot gear had faced off with trucker-led demonstrators for two full days, finally driving them out of their protest hub outside parliament.
Ontario provincial police and federal Royal Canadian Mounted Police have joined forces to dismantle the ‘Freedom Convoy’
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.
Via Al Jazeera:
Ottawa police have asked protesters to “remain peaceful and lawful” as they moved in to clear an occupation that has blockaded the centre of the Canadian capital for three weeks.
Dozens of police vehicles, including a large black armoured car, and about 100 police officers arrived near the Ottawa Art Gallery at about 8am (13:00 GMT) on Friday, where about 20 vehicles have been parked since late January, blocking the roadway.
“If you do not leave now, you will be arrested,” police said, banging on windows of vehicles, Al Jazeera’s Roger Lemoyne reported. At least four people were arrested.
Ottawa police have increased their presence in the downtown core of Ottawa over the past several days, as they coordinated with Ontario provincial police and federal Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) to clear out participants in the so-called “Freedom Convoy”.
All media who are attending the area, please keep a distance and stay out of police operations for your safety. Anyone found within areas undergoing enforcement may be subject to arrest. There will be a media availability later today at 474 Elgin Street. #ottnews
CTV anchor: “You’ve just compared people who have may have donated to this to the same people who are funding maybe a terrorist. I just want to be clear here. This is really important. A lot of folks are just like ‘look, I just don’t like your vaccine mandates. And I donated to this, now it’s illegal, should I be worried that the bank can freeze my account?’ What’s your answer?”
David Lametti (Canada’s Justice Minister): “Well, I think if you are a member of a pro-Trump movement who’s donating hundreds of thousands of dollars and millions of dollars to this kind of thing, they oughta be worried.”
We went from “2 weeks to flatten the curve” to “you’re fired if you don’t get the jab” to “your bank accounts are frozen if you protest against us”
Somehow we are still the conspiracy theorists?#Repost
Globalists knew their mandated injections would lead to worldwide uprisings & civil unrest. They predicted it in the 2010 Rockefeller document Lockstep. How to handle these uprisings was discussed & rehearsed ahead of time – “label them as criminals & shut down their finances.” pic.twitter.com/RE6DZLvY4s
Dozens of cars briefly blocked a main highway in Israel for a short while on Monday in protest of coronavirus regulations, causing heavy traffic at the entrance to Jerusalem.
Based off of a similar protest movement in Canada, the convoy of anti-vaccine activists aimed to reach the Knesset, and hung signs on their cars reading “liberty,” “new world order,” “no more restrictions, going back to normal,” “cancel the mask mandate” and “a free nation in our country,” among other slogans.
“I”m here for my children, so that they can have a better world,” one of the protesters explained. “Rights are being taken away from citizens with no real justification, and we need to fight that.” She added, “We are no one’s enemies.”
Canada:trucker-led protesters enter 14th day of blockade: Truckers are staying put in the Canadian capital for a 14th day of an unprecedented occupation that has shut down central Ottawa, as well as disrupted cross-border trade, in anger at Covid health rules. pic.twitter.com/G2GAyPYN30
Ottawa has declared a state of emergency to help deal with an unprecedented 10-day occupation by protesting truckers that has blocked much of the centre of the Canadian capital
From the western province of Alberta, moving east to Quebec City, and in cities and towns in between, thousands of Canadians have hit the streets in trucks, tractors, cars and on foot to protest the nation’s Covid-19 restrictions.
With persistent and noisy horn honking, protesters are demanding governments at all levels lift their health restrictions, including vaccine and mask mandates, lockdowns and restrictions on businesses and gatherings.
“The whole event has gone beyond just vaccines and it is now about the entire ordeal,” protester James MacDonald told CNN, adding he’s been in Ottawa since last weekend and has no intention of leaving until health measures are dropped.