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Protesters rally in Vancouver, block traffic at several major intersections

Last Updated Feb 20, 2020 at 5:41 am PST

Summary

More than 200 activists rallied in Vancovuer in solidarity with Wet'suwet'en hereditary chiefs who oppose a pipeline

Protesters started their movement by blocking traffic at Commercial Dr. and Broadway before marching to Clark Dr.

No one was arrested and there was a heavy police presence on scene to direct traffic

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Pre-emptive action by TransLink to secure a court injunction may have saved transit commuters a ton of time getting home Wednesday evening, but protesters supporting Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs opposing a natural gas pipeline took to the streets instead.

As a result of the demonstration, many drivers were stuck in traffic.

“This was a protest that started at the intersection of Commercial and Broadway that did start in the intersection. That protest that moved all the way down Broadway, stopped at Clark went down Clark and stopped. That then created a very large traffic jam over East 1st, particularly down Terminal,” CityNews Vancouver’s David Zura said. “Protesters then moved up East First, came back down Commercial and then returned back to where it started. Transit, however, not really affected.”

He said the group would momentarily snarl traffic at several intersections, before returning to Commercial and Broadway.

“That march just kept moving through the city and then stopping periodically. It started over at Commercial and Broadway where the initial protest was, then it moved down Broadway stopped over at Clark,” he said.

More than 200 protesters gathered at around 5:00 p.m. and disbanded following the march at around 7:15 p.m.

No one was arrested and Vancouver Police officers were on scene to direct traffic.

TransLink was granted an injunction on Thursday to prevent protesters from physically obstructing, interfering or impeding its SkyTrain facilities.

“While TransLink supports the right to peaceful protest, the safety of our customers and our staff is our priority and we must protect the hundreds of thousands of people who rely on the Expo, Millennium, and Canada Lines,” the transit authority said.

TransLink initially sought to prevent protesters from occupying any of its facilities. Its lawyers listed safety as their prime concern for the injunction.