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Prime Minister Trudeau responded to a recommendation from the Association of Quebec Provincial Police Officers president, Pierre Veilleux. Last week, Veilleux wrote a letter to Quebec Premier Francois Legault suggesting a “specialized team of Canadian Armed Forces” accompany Quebec police if they are to intervene on the Kahnawake reserve.
The letter was written after Veilleux learned that a .50 calibre machine gun was seized by Peacekeepers—among other weapons last January according to La Presse.
Veilleux’s letter read, “This type of weapon, it should be specified, is used among other things, according to what is revealed to us on the site of the Government of Canada/Armed Forces, to pierce armour!”
Prime Minister Trudeau noted that he preferred the current negotiations, saying, “We have productive negotiations going on with the Mohawks. We recognize that it takes time.”
Trudeau previously stated that he does not want the confrontation with the Kahnawake to have similar optics to the Oka crisis in the 90s, a land dispute between the Mohawk people and the town of Oka, Quebec.
“Even if we have been able to restore the transportation of goods by CN, there are impacts on the commuter train [because of the blockade in] Kahnawake. We hope to be able to resolve this in a sustainable and peaceful manner soon.”
“We recognize that it is up to Quebec to manage a potential police intervention. We can settle this in a peaceful and lasting way,” added Trudeau
“There is no question of sending the Army against Canadian citizens. I have enormous confidence in our police forces and we have full confidence in the capabilities of the [provincial] government.”