The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) confirmed to Breitbart News that no officers were assaulted by protesters at the Alberta border blockade despite claims by the province’s Premier, Jason Kenney, that they were assaulting them. ‘did.
The blockade – in which truckers are protesting various Canadian coronavirus mandates by blocking the highway used as an international border crossing between Coutts, Alberta, and Sweet Grass, Montana – is part of what has become known as the “Freedom Convoy which also led major protests in Ottawa, the nation’s capital.
At a news conference on Tuesday, Kenney called for “calm” and said he had heard reports of “people allied with protesters assaulting RCMP officers, including one instance trying to ram into members of the RCMP”. [with a vehicle].”
“This kind of conduct is totally unacceptable,” Kenney continued. “Assaulting law enforcement officers who were simply doing their job to maintain public safety and the rule of law is completely unacceptable.”
As first reported by Rebel News, the assault allegation was false and the RCMP corporal. Curtis Peters, who is on the ground in Coutts, independently confirmed to Breitbart News that no such assault took place and that the incident with the vehicle was a civilian-to-civilian accident.
“No RCMP officers were assaulted,” he said. “There was an assault that took place between two civilians. One was a protester who was driving the wrong way down a one-way lane of the highway and then collided with the innocent person. … But we didn’t have any aggression from the police.
According to Peters, the collision sparked a fight between the drivers.
While Kenney said protesters “refused to negotiate in good faith with the RCMP,” Peters told Breitbart News communications were “constant” and “continuous.”
Peters said the RCMP’s goal was to ‘get the road to open’ peacefully and added that over the past few hours truckers had agreed to open a traffic lane for access in north and south direction. “But it didn’t really open up the border and get vehicles down, it just allowed other people to leave who had originally been in the protests and wanted to get out. It was done on their own,” he said. “We were told it might be a temporary thing.”
In the negotiations, the truckers argue that unless all warrants are dropped, they will not leave.
Although “no one was seriously injured,” Peters said, “there is still conflict.”
One such case of conflict involves the mayor of Coutts, Jim Willett, who reported the harassment of some protest supporters.
According to Peters, Willett – who represents a town of 245 people according to the last published census in Canada – said he had protesters outside his residence who were harassing him.
“The fight is not with the mayor,” Peters said. “He has no interest in the game when it comes to warrants. He’s trying to move this community forward by truck.
The RCMP also tracked online threats against the mayor, but could not confirm to Breitbart News that those threats came from protesters.
Peters says he cannot predict when the end of the blockade, which entered its fifth day on Wednesday, will come.
Breccan F. Thiès is a reporter for Breitbart News. You can follow him on Twitter @BreccanFThies.