Ottawa – Thousands of truckers rebelled against compulsory vaccination.
In Canada, truck drivers protested against the corona vaccination requirement, which recently came into force when crossing the border into the USA, with a day-long protest drive.
On Saturday many truck drivers arrived in the capital Ottawa, where they were enthusiastically received by thousands of people. The protesters waved Canadian flags and placards reading “Freedom” and chanted against Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, reports the AFP news agency.
Some parked on the grounds of the National War Memorial and danced at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, others carried signs and flags with swastikas on them, and some used the statue of Canadian hero Terry Fox to make an anti-vaccination statement, according to the AP was widely condemned.
“It makes me sick to see protesters dancing on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and desecrating the National War Memorial. Generations of Canadians have fought and died for our rights, including free speech, but not like this. Shame on those involved,” tweeted General Wayne Eyre, Canada’s chief of defense staff.
The so-called “Convoy for Freedom” was in Vancouver on Canada’s west coast on Sunday last week, as Canadian media reported. More and more drivers joined the convoy on the way to the capital Ottawa, which is around 4400 kilometers away from Vancouver.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his family left their home in the capital, Ottawa, for an undisclosed location, according to the Daily Mail. On Friday he had already described the truckers’ views as anti-science, anti-government and anti-social. The newspaper writes of up to 20,000 participating truck drivers. “I want this all to stop – these measures are unjustified,” said a protester in front of the parliament building.
The vaccination requirement for border crossings was introduced by Canada and the USA in mid-January. Unvaccinated Canadian truck drivers must therefore go into a 14-day quarantine when returning from the USA, while US drivers without a vaccination are not allowed into the country at all. The United States threatens a permanent ban for violations.
The industry association Canadian Trucking Alliance had criticized the protest drive. The vast majority of Canadian drivers have been vaccinated against the corona virus. Trudeau described the truckers as a “small fringe minority” who do not represent the majority of Canadians. In Canada, 90 percent of adults are now vaccinated.
The movement received support from Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk on Thursday, who tweeted, “Canadian truckers rule.” Former US President Donald Trump said at an event: “We want these great Canadian truckers to know that we have our wholeheartedly behind them. They are doing far more to defend American liberty than our politicians.”