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CN Rail train collides with Tyendinaga protestors’ wooden blockade

On Wednesday a Canadian National Railway train collided with wooden logs and pallets while travelling across tracks near a highway 49 overpass.
Sam Edwards High Level, Alberta

On Wednesday, a Canadian National Railway train collided with wooden logs and pallets while travelling across tracks near a highway 49 overpass. The obstructions were placed there by a second protest group of Tyendinaga Mohawk demonstrators, according to the Ottawa Citizen.

The protestors could be seen carrying different debris to the tracks where a burning tire was placed on Monday. The OPP showed up to the scene to attempt to get the situation under control.

It is still unknown whether any of the protestors involved in the second camp were charged or taken into custody by police.

The Lennox and Addington OPP charged ten protestors from the first location with resisting arrest, disobeying a court order and mischief of over $5,000. A court date for March 24 has been set for the demonstrators who were charged.

An open letter was issued to Justin Trudeau by Amnesty International which was added to its website on Tuesday. According to the organization, they went to see the protestors shortly after their arrests on Monday.

In the letter, secretary general Alex Neve wrote “visited Tyendinaga today, in the aftermath of the Ontario Provincial Police’s enforcement action which has reportedly resulted in the arrest of 10 protesters.”

“It was notable to us that all community members we spoke with described a feeling of betrayal and broken trust, particularly given the dialogue that had begun with Minister Miller on February 15th, reiterated in his assurance to Tyendinaga leadership the following day, in his letter of February 16th, that he ‘welcome[s] the invitation to talk again in the near future to continue our open and respectful dialogue.’”

Neve told Prime Minister Trudeau, “we appreciated the restraint that your government demonstrated in the initial phases of the blockades” adding the “call for patience is particularly inappropriate with respect to the Wet’suwet’en people, who have waited for 23 years for their land rights to be recognized following the groundbreaking 1997 Supreme Court of Canada Delgamuukw decision; and for the Tyendinga Mohawks who have waited for over 170 years for the return of their lands taken as part of the Culbertson Tract.”

“While your government did initially show remarkable restraint, you have of course in the end given a nod to enforcement action, which is now being pursued by national, provincial and municipal police forces across the country. That enforcement will not bring resolution to the deep concerns that underlie these rights struggles and protests.”

Amnesty asked Prime Minister Trudeau to “ensure that land defenders are not criminalized and that people who have been arrested for defending the land and who have not engaged in acts of criminal violence are released unconditionally.”

He also requested that Trudeau “engage directly and personally in discussions with Indigenous chiefs, elected and hereditary, so as to demonstrate that you recognize that these are not simply matters of barricades and law enforcement, but are the very essence of a respectful and rights regarding nation-to-nation relationship.”

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