Berliner Boersenzeitung - Canada protesters dig in with military-style proficiency

AED 3.917574
AFN 76.742265
ALL 101.29178
AMD 420.105081
ANG 1.92121
AOA 892.804731
ARS 929.329717
AUD 1.657623
AWG 1.92001
AZN 1.816187
BAM 1.958154
BBD 2.152368
BDT 116.990655
BGN 1.955332
BHD 0.402084
BIF 3054.801347
BMD 1.066672
BND 1.45216
BOB 7.381875
BRL 5.578792
BSD 1.065972
BTN 88.986386
BWP 14.805801
BYN 3.488562
BYR 20906.779677
BZD 2.148763
CAD 1.463832
CDF 2992.016024
CHF 0.972162
CLF 0.037078
CLP 1023.088489
CNY 7.726016
CNH 7.73426
COP 4175.35057
CRC 535.34363
CUC 1.066672
CUP 28.266819
CVE 110.397728
CZK 25.241948
DJF 189.826444
DKK 7.461251
DOP 62.90563
DZD 143.564975
EGP 51.700554
ERN 16.000086
ETB 60.569521
FJD 2.425453
FKP 0.856284
GBP 0.861301
GEL 2.842664
GGP 0.856284
GHS 14.338238
GIP 0.856284
GMD 72.424532
GNF 9164.103676
GTQ 8.290968
GYD 223.028141
HKD 8.3558
HNL 26.317641
HRK 7.552212
HTG 141.410677
HUF 394.073061
IDR 17306.173547
ILS 4.013195
IMP 0.856284
INR 88.973868
IQD 1396.465843
IRR 44866.909047
ISK 150.529045
JEP 0.856284
JMD 166.139745
JOD 0.756058
JPY 165.078133
KES 140.182376
KGS 94.951448
KHR 4332.228833
KMF 493.415969
KPW 960.005563
KRW 1471.39991
KWD 0.32875
KYD 0.88836
KZT 475.647399
LAK 22730.114731
LBP 95459.974109
LKR 321.954059
LRD 206.081336
LSL 20.427026
LTL 3.149606
LVL 0.645219
LYD 5.201205
MAD 10.799184
MDL 19.091775
MGA 4699.650267
MKD 61.627851
MMK 2238.570388
MNT 3680.020261
MOP 8.60044
MRU 42.349126
MUR 49.632536
MVR 16.479962
MWK 1847.821588
MXN 18.165745
MYR 5.104038
MZN 67.733315
NAD 20.426585
NGN 1147.472663
NIO 39.237542
NOK 11.746518
NPR 142.378178
NZD 1.804815
OMR 0.410627
PAB 1.065982
PEN 3.977382
PGK 4.05087
PHP 61.324048
PKR 296.669678
PLN 4.304531
PYG 7886.407688
QAR 3.88322
RON 4.976031
RSD 117.150557
RUB 100.153469
RWF 1374.552589
SAR 4.001304
SBD 9.002898
SCR 15.048606
SDG 625.070171
SEK 11.63521
SGD 1.45205
SHP 1.347687
SLE 24.370588
SLL 22367.591482
SOS 609.603536
SRD 36.829027
STD 22077.965749
SVC 9.327126
SYP 2680.046881
SZL 20.493639
THB 39.434593
TJS 11.646102
TMT 3.74402
TND 3.361051
TOP 2.55356
TRY 34.783013
TTD 7.238635
TWD 34.819176
TZS 2752.014554
UAH 42.442327
UGX 4061.883497
USD 1.066672
UYU 40.929208
UZS 13535.273106
VEF 3864076.923726
VES 38.71666
VND 27147.346743
VUV 126.637525
WST 2.990532
XAF 656.746589
XAG 0.038311
XAU 0.000451
XCD 2.882736
XDR 0.809473
XOF 656.740425
XPF 119.331742
YER 267.041519
ZAR 20.358542
ZMK 9601.3306
ZMW 27.369649
ZWL 343.468088
  • CMSC




  • SLAC




  • NGG




  • SCS




  • RIO




  • GSK








  • BP




  • AZN




  • BCC








  • BCE




  • CMSD




  • BTI




  • VOD




  • RELX




  • JRI




Canada protesters dig in with military-style proficiency
Canada protesters dig in with military-style proficiency

Canada protesters dig in with military-style proficiency

With support from ex-police and military intelligence officers, American funding, and stockpiles of food and fuel, "Freedom Convoy" protesters are hunkered down for a long stay in the Canadian capital.

Text size:

Their numbers have fallen from a peak of almost 15,000 when the truckers first rolled into the capital two weeks ago. At first the goal was to protest Covid restrictions although this has morphed into a broader outcry against the government.

The protesters remain firmly entrenched, despite growing calls for them to end what Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Friday was an "unlawful" demonstration and threats of jail and steep fines after a local state of emergency was declared.

Outside parliament, supporters serve up coffee, eggs and sausages to bleary-eyed truckers, while others provided them with beds to sleep in, hot showers and even laundry services. Nearby, kids played while their parents huddled by campfires to stay warm.

"Every day I come here to get my coffee, to get my emotional support, my spiritual support," said protester George Dick.

"These guys are awesome! I couldn't do it without them," he says of the volunteers.

Elian Renaud, an 18-year-old mechanic, has been manning a grill since 4 a.m. (0900 GMT), saying the truckers are very happy "to be eating a good dinner, not just small snacks."

Nearby a plastic table is close to buckling under the weight of water bottles and soda cans, while protesters continue to ferry fuel in wagons to keep the big rigs roaring -- despite efforts by police to cut off the convoy's diesel supplies.

Ottawa police Chief Peter Sloly has said this is "an entirely sophisticated level of demonstrators."

"They have the capability to run strong organization here provincially and nationally, and we're seeing that play out in real-time," he told a briefing.

- Base camp -

A few kilometers away, an encampment at a baseball stadium is being used as a staging area. An AFP journalist saw barbecues, saunas and stockpiles of food and fuel, as well as rows of portable toilets.

Daniel Gagnon, sporting a goatee and small round glasses, set up a booth to sell signs for Can$20 dollars (US$16) to raise funds for the truckers.

"If a truck driver needs something, no problem, we find it," he says. "Everywhere, there is food. It's free. If anything is missing, people can call, we'll help them out."

Canadian authorities' freezing of millions of dollars raised online for the protesters seems to have had little impact as donations of goods pour in.

Started at the end of January, they had raised more than Can$10 million on GoFundMe, before the donation page was removed for violating the crowdsourced fundraising site's terms of service that "prohibit user content that reflects or promotes behaviour in support of violence."

A subsequent campaign launched on the Christian site GiveSendGo raised several million dollars, before it too was frozen by the Superior Court of Ontario.

Scott Holt, 58, who's been sleeping in his truck since the protest began, shrugged it off.

"I'm getting financially supported... I need food, I've got that. I need fuel, the organization supplies the fuel. Somehow, someway they always get me fuel. What more do I need?" he said.

On Friday, Trudeau indicated that half of the donated funds supporting the trucker convoy has come from US sources.

From the start, the protestors received the backing of American conservatives, including former president Donald Trump and Texas Senator Ted Cruz, who called the protesters "heroes" and "patriots."

- Tripping up authorities -

Marcel Chartrand, a professor at the University of Ottawa, told AFP the protesters "appear to be getting some direction from groups in the United States."

But there are still a lot of unanswered questions, he said. "How's this organization being supported? How is it influenced? Who are the people behind it... and where is it going?"

Among the protestors are a number of retired cops and soldiers -- more than 150 with "boots on the ground," according to Police on Guard, a group opposed to Covid health restrictions. It also broadcasts videos of the demonstrations, according to its website.

Daniel "Danny" Bulford, a former Mountie on the prime minister's security detail, told a news conference he's been sharing his "extensive experience in protective operations for large scale events" in the capital including "tactical planning" with protest organizers, and helping to liaise with authorities.

He quit the RCMP last year over mandatory Covid vaccines, he said.

Chartrand noted that the protesters don't use "mainstream social media" and rely instead on walkie-talkie app Zello to evade police barricades, or secure messaging app Telegram to plan solidarity protests, for example, and they shun mainstream media.

"It makes it hard to follow them," he said, and has allowed the protesters to circumvent efforts by "intelligence agencies and police" who too often have been "finding out a bit too late to react and put a stop to, for example, the closing of the Ambassador Bridge," a key Canada-US trade corridor.