The Police in the Canadian capital of Ottawa has arrested two protest leaders in the protests that have been ongoing for the past three weeks.
The Police on Thursday ramped up their presence in the area, where approximately 400 vehicles are still involved. The Police have told protesters to leave the area or face possible arrest and criminal charges.
Earlier in the day, two police buses moved into the city’s central area as the Ottawa Police Service handed out leaflets warning the protesters that they would face severe penalties under provincial and federal legislation.
The leaflet also stated that it could include arrest and criminal charges, seizure or removal of their vehicles, and a suspension of their driver’s licenses.
Steve Bell, the interim police chief, said in a statement that; “Police have been bolstering resources, developing clear plans, and preparing to take action to disperse the protesters.”
“The action is imminent. Fencing and other barriers had been set up and movement into the city center would be restricted to only those with lawful reasons to be there, such as living or working in the area.”
“We’ve been very clear with everyone since the very beginning: It’s time to go. Your time in our city has come to an end and you must leave.”
The protests started late last month as Canadian truckers protested against a mandatory vaccination requirement at the Canada-US border.