Saturday evening passed off calmly, while the day was marked by a few moments of tension. According to the Ottawa Police Service (OPS), 350 motorcyclists took part in the convoy which marched past a few hundred demonstrators and a heavy police presence.

Three people were arrested on Saturday, and seven on Friday night as police said they were facing a crowd agressive.

Since Friday morning, municipal officers have issued 761 parking tickets, towed 39 vehicles and issued 10 statements of offence.

On the program, Sunday, the demonstrators must gather in a church not far from the city center around 10:30 a.m.

No other activities are planned.

Demonstrators speak with police.

Ottawa Police will be present downtown for as long as needed to avoid a downtown occupation like last night.

Photo: Radio-Canada / Nickolas Persaud

The Ottawa Police and our partners are going to be there [dans le centre-ville] as long as the presence is required to keep peace and security in the Cityassured the acting deputy head of the OPSPatricia Ferguson.

It’s going according to our planshe said. We have several options.

Asked about the protesters’ intentions to return home, a spokesperson for the group Freedom Fighters Canada, Bethan Nodwellsaid that no other event was planned, besides the mass.

For the president of the Association of Downtown Residents Community, Mary Huang, she and her neighbors are waiting to see the protesters leave the scene as planned and not hang around like they did in February.

Particularly some downtown seniors. They were held hostage in their home for three and a half weeks. They are still traumatizeddescribed Ms. Huang.

The real test is to see if the protesters will leave as they said they would or if they will try something elseshe continued.

A protester speaks into a microphone.

Saturday evening passed peacefully. On Friday, the police said they were facing an “aggressive” crowd.

Photo: Radio-Canada / Nickolas Persaud

Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson said the police department took a hard line to prevent the protest from getting out of hand. More than 800 agents were mobilized as reinforcements, if necessary.

I have a lot of confidence with the plan [de la police]he said in an interview. We have a police service that knows the problems and the challenges.

Still, that doesn’t necessarily mean Ottawa is done with convoy enthusiasts.

The message to those responsible for the protest, respect that Ottawa is not just a city of government with Parliament Hill and the Supreme Court, but it is a city with lots of residential neighborhoods in the downtown corepleaded Mr. Watson. It is time for those responsible for this demonstration to understand that it is not acceptable to attack the community in the city of Ottawa.

We never leftMs. Nodwell claimed. Small groups of five or ten protesters have visited the parliament site since February to continue to demand an end to the health rules linked to COVID-19.

Obstacles to traffic to be expected

Motorists will again have to deal with traffic obstructions on Sunday morning. In particular, the Ottawa Police Service (OPS) warns that it will close, with its partners from the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) and the Ministry of Transportation of Ontario (MTO), exit ramps in highways like the day before.

A major focus of our efforts will be to support and protect the CHEO CN Challenge, writes the OPS in a press release. This is a cycling event to raise funds for care, research and equipment related to the treatment of childhood cancer.

The organizers of the demonstration invite, on their website, their supporters to make donations for this cause.

With information from Rosalie Sinclair and The Canadian Press

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