Rail Blockade Agreement

Protesters from Mi`kmaq to Listuguj blocked a section of the Gaspésie railway line connecting New Brunswick to the Gaspé region. He said he was frustrated by the continued deadlock, which he said was jeopardizing the future of the railway line. Supporters come to the entrance to block the S-Bahn line, Monday, March 2, 2020 in Kahnawake, Que. (The Canadian Press / Ryan Remiorz) He said the deal included discussions about the country`s guardians, as well as recognition of hereditary chiefs whom he called “important.” Trudeau, who says improving relations with Aboriginal groups is a priority, called for dialogue. But tensions quickly escalated as blockades led to rail layoffs and bottlenecks in goods like propane and business groups warned of further economic damage. MONTREAL – Despite promises to heal the often strained relationship between the Canadian government and the country`s indigenous population, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is at an impasse over a gas pipeline through a tribe`s traditional territory, and parts of the country`s rail system have been completely shut down following protests at one point. Mohawk Nation in Kahnawake Minister Kenneth Deer said he would speak to the media at 4:00 p.m.m to discuss the agreement and the future of the blockade. Details of the tentative agreement have not yet been made public. Following the agreement, work on the pipeline resumed on Monday and Canadian police returned to wet`suwet`en country. Most of the rail and roadblocks have been removed. “We feel like we`ve been taken hostage, because there was now an agreement in principle there (in British Columbia),” he said. MONTREAL – Rail blockades in Quebec remained in effect Monday, despite a draft agreement reached Sunday in British Columbia between Wet`suwet`en Erbhäuptling and senior government ministers. Since last week, two of Canada`s largest railways – CN and Canadian Pacific – have been silently sharing their railway lines to transport large stocks of communities in need, according to several government, CN and industry sources.

On Sunday, representatives from wet`suwet`en-erbhäuptling as well as the federal and B.C. governments announced that they had reached an agreement to resolve the dispute, resulting in nationwide rail blockades. “We want a little more clarity from the Wet`suwet`en Erbhäuptling before making a decision,” said Kenneth Deer, a representative of Kahnawake`s traditional Longhouse political system, who was the activists` spokesman during the blockade. On Monday afternoon, Montreal police confirmed that they had been called in to reinforce CN Rail in response to a new blockade on a railway bridge in Montreal`s Pointe-St-Charles neighbourhood. After weeks of rail blockades and other protests against the Coastal GasLink pipeline, the Canadian government has united with Indigenous leaders.


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