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One of the main organizers of the Canadian Freedom Convoy demonstration has been arrested in Ottawa.
Chris Barber’s arrest was announced during a debate in Canada’s Parliament on Thursday, CBC reported.
Barber, who is a senior convoy leader, is expected to face criminal charges, according to the CBC. He previously said in a press release that politicians had refused to engage in “serious dialogue”.
Ottawa police said they are not confirming or denying investigations of individuals until charges have been filed, according to the report.
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“We understand your frustration and sincerely wish there was another way for us to get our message across, but the blame for your inconvenience rests entirely on the shoulders of the politicians who have [preferred] to vilify and insult us rather than engage in respectful and serious dialogue.”
The arrest comes after Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Monday invoked the Emergencies Act, which gives the government the power to quash protests by towing vehicles, and even more direct measures such as freezing personal bank accounts.
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“These blockades are illegal, and if you’re still participating in them, it’s time to go home,” Trudeau said. “This is about keeping Canadians safe, protecting people’s jobs and restoring trust in our institutions.”
Trudeau and Canada’s Attorney General David Lametti said the move is temporary and will be geographically limited as well as in scope, and also said the Canadian military would not intervene.
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Ottawa police recently handed out flyers to truckers participating in the Freedom Convoy, demanding that they leave the area.
“You must leave the area now. Anyone who blocks streets or assists others in blocking streets is committing a criminal offense and you could be arrested. You must immediately cease all illegal activity or you will face charges,” said the flyer, obtained by Fox. News, readings. “The people of Ottawa are being denied the lawful use, enjoyment and operation of their property and you are shutting down businesses. This is mischief under the Criminal Code.”
Emma Colton of Fox News and The Associated Press contributed to this report