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Transportation paralysis spreading across Canada as Indigenous protests escalate

Container pile-ups at the key ports of Vancouver, Montreal and Halifax were reaching critical dimensions Tuesday as anti-pipeline protests and demonstrations in solidarity with Wet’suwet’ hereditary chiefs spread across Canada. In the vicinity of the Port of Vancouver alone, more than 50 ships are sitting at anchor, while some carriers are diverting their vessels from the Port of Halifax.

In northern British Columbia, members of the Gitxsan Nation resurrected a blockade Monday night near New Hazelton, disrupting CN rail service to the Port of Prince Rupert. But RCMP broke up the demonstration and made arrests.

And in Vancouver police were moving to enforce an injunction on a blockade at the entrance of the Port of Vancouver by protesters at the intersection of Hastings and Clark streets.

“While we respect the right to a peaceful protest, the port authority has a federal responsibility to ensure the safe and efficient movement of Canada’s trade through the port,” said Danielle Jang, spokesperson for the Port of Vancouver, which handles the great bulk of Canada’s trade with Asia.

Meanwhile, it has been confirmed that confidential talks brokered by the federal government led to CN and CP Rail co-operating to bypass the critical Tyendinaga blockade site near Belleville, Ontario in order to transport vital supplies to communities. (photo Port of Vancouver)