First Nations’ blockade in Napanee has ended

TORONTO – A First Nations’ blockade in the Napanee area between Belleville and Kingston, Ont. disrupted VIA Rail service on the busy Toronto to Montreal corridor for much of the day Wednesday.

But the blockade ended “peacefully” around 4 p.m., according to the OPP.

The affected train lines were:

  • Trains 41, 42, 44, 46, 47, 48, 50, 55, 56 57, 59, 60,62, 63, 64 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 650, 651: will be replaced by busses
  • Train 52: replaced by bus service from Toronto to Ottawa
  • Train 51: operating between Montréal and Ottawa and bus service from Ottawa to Toronto.

WATCH: Disgruntled passengers at the VIA station in Ottawa are diverted onto buses after rail service is suspended

Three men were charged last week after demonstrators temporarily stopped all traffic on CN Rail tracks in eastern Ontario as part of a week-long protest calling for an inquiry into missing and murdered aboriginal women.

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Those involved in the blockade vowed to step up their actions after a controversial parliamentary report into missing and murdered indigenous women rejected calls for a full public inquiry.

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

Chief R. Donald Maracle said in a statement Wednesday that the Tyendinaga Mohawk Council are not involved in the blockade but do support the need for a commission.

“It is unfortunate that people feel forced to implement direct action in an effort to draw attention to the issue,” he said.

– With files from The Canadian Press

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