March 8, 2014 4:58 pm
Updated: March 8, 2014 6:24 pm

Three Mohawk protesters charged after rail blockade in Ontario

OPP officer keep an eye on the native road protest near Shannonville, Ont., on Monday March 3, 2014. The protest is led by Shawn Brant, who wants a national inquiry into missing and murdered native women. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Lars Hagberg


NAPANEE, Ont. – Police say three people will be charged after Mohawk protesters calling for an inquiry into missing and murdered aboriginal women occupied CN Rail tracks in eastern Ontario.

Provincial police say demonstrators moved onto the tracks Saturday morning in Napanee, leading to CN issuing a stop order for all trains.

Police say a man struck the window of an unmarked police cruiser, breaking the glass.

Story continues below

Sgt. Kristine Rae says four people were arrested, and that three of them will face charges that have yet to be determined by investigators.

VIA Rail issued a travel advisory on Saturday saying the blockade affects the movement of VIA Rail trains on the Toronto – Montréal and Toronto – Ottawa routes, in both directions.

The stop order was lifted early in the afternoon, and train service is resuming.

Passengers are being told to expect delays. Service recovery measures such as late train travel credits or travel credits for bus substitutions will not be offered for affected trains. Extra charges paid for Business Class tickets will be reimbursed in the case of a bus substitution.

READ MORE: Native protest continues east of Belleville

Demonstrators had vowed on Friday to step up their protest in response to a parliamentary report into missing and murdered indigenous women that rejected numerous calls for a full public inquiry.

Spokesman Shawn Brant has said that there will be consequences for a national inquiry not being called.

The activists have been blockading a road east of Belleville since last Sunday night.

The release of the missing women report on Friday set off a firestorm of criticism from opposition critics, First Nation leaders and human rights groups.

Liberal and NDP members who sat on the all-party panel issued their own dissenting reports, accusing the federal Conservatives of sanitizing the final report on an ongoing crisis that has caught the attention of the United Nations.

Among its 16 recommendations, the report calls on the Conservative government to work with the provinces, territories and municipalities to create a public awareness and prevention campaign focusing on violence against aboriginal women and girls.

It’s estimated there are hundreds of cases of missing and murdered aboriginal women in Canada dating back to the 1960s – officially as many as 600, and likely hundreds more unreported victims.

© 2014 The Canadian Press

Report an error


Want to discuss? Please read our Commenting Policy first.