The RCMP has arrested three people after an illegal blockade by protestors at the Nova Scotia/New Brunswick border. The blockade lasted for nearly 24 hours and caused disruptions on both sides of the border to individuals, businesses and vital services such as health care.
Cumberland County District RCMP, who were supported by other general duty and traffic services members, were deployed to the area to maintain order and keep the peace, and liaison officers attempted to engage in a meaningful dialogue in the hopes of achieving a peaceful resolution. When it became clear that this could not be met through dialogue, additional officers were deployed.
Between 9 and 10 p.m. last night, RCMP members, including Special Tactical Operations, were able to peacefully dismantle the illegal blockade and move the protestors out of the roadway. Three protestors who failed to comply were arrested for Mischief and were later released on undertakings. They will appear in court at a later date.
At approximately 10:20 p.m., Hwy. 104 was opened in both directions and traffic was flowing freely. A small number of protestors who had blocked Hwy. 366 in Tidnish had also left the area.
The RCMP respects the Charter right of all Canadians to peacefully assemble, however blockading a highway is a criminal offence and this type of action will not be tolerated. Our members balanced the protestors' rights with enforcing the law and after unsuccessfully trying to resolve the blockade through dialogue, the protestors left the RCMP with no choice other than to move in and begin effecting arrests in an effort to dismantle the blockade and reopen the highway. The RCMP is maintaining a presence at the Nova Scotia/New Brunswick border at this time.
The RCMP would like to thank the Amherst Police Department for their role in assisting with traffic control related to the illegal blockade as commercial and vehicle traffic was backed up from the highway into the Town of Amherst.
The RCMP would also like to thank all those affected by this blockade for their patience and for letting our officers do their work in an effort to support public safety and the safety of critical infrastructure.