Motorcycles circulate through the Canadian capital under police surveillance

Motorcycles roared through the streets of Canada’s capital and a memorial service was held at the National War Memorial, while a heavy police presence kept an eye on the “Rolling Thunder” protest.

OTTAWA – Motorcycles roared through the streets of Canada’s capital and a memorial service was held at the National War Memorial on Saturday, as a heavy police presence kept an eye on the “Rolling Thunder” protest.

Many of the people involved in this weekend’s event also attended the “Freedom Comvoy” that closed downtown Ottawa for weeks in February.

Ottawa police said two people were arrested on Saturday and 33 vehicles had been towed from the exclusion zone since Friday morning.

Hundreds of protesters gathered at the National War Memorial, which was a focal point during the early days of the February protests.

Fans watched retired Afghanistan veteran Christopher Deering lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in a quasi-remembrance ceremony.

Other speakers voiced their opposition to vaccine mandates, COVID-19 restrictions and the government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Supporters were asked to remove profanity slogans aimed at the prime minister for the event.

A small group of counter-protesters gathered across the street from the memorial shouting “go home” to the protesters.

The police formed a line between the two groups to keep the peace.

At the end of the service, the crowd marched to greet a convoy of about 150 motorcycles traveling along a route drawn up by the police.

Police stopped the motorcycle convoy two blocks from the National War Memorial and had the bikers back out of the core on a designated route.

The protest in February lasted three weeks as large rigs and other trucks set up in front of Parliament Hill and set up camps that blocked traffic. The federal government invoked the Emergencies Act in an effort to dislodge them and similar protesters who blocked border crossings.

On Friday night, a convoy of large rigs, campers and other trucks tried to reach Parliament Hill. Police, wearing helmets and shields, formed a line to push protesters back and remove the large vehicles from an area east of the parliamentary precinct.

Seven people were arrested on various charges, including assaulting police, the Ottawa Police Service said. At least one truck also had its windows broken.

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