Demonstration ends peacefully in west Edmonton
EDMONTON- About 45 police officers responded to a protest outside a west Edmonton community centre around 3:00 Saturday afternoon.
About 110 people took to the parking lot outside the Belmead Community Hall, located at 91st Ave and 182nd Street, to voice their displeasure with recent decisions made by the Ethiopian Government.
“They are protesting the Ethiopian government agencies who are holding a meeting here,” said Dereje Geleta, who was part of the demonstration.
About 40 people were involved in the meeting inside the hall.
“All that police know right now is that a meeting was interrupted by several protesters. They believe that there’s approximately 100 people here,” said Edmonton Police Service spokesperson Patrycia Thenu.
Demonstrators say their relatives and political leaders in Ethiopia are being unfairly arrested and imprisoned without trials in the country.
“We are not threatening anyone. We are not pushing or violating anyone. It is a peaceful demonstration for our right, for the right of the people in our home country,” said Geleta. “There is a gross violation of human rights… There is no freedom of religion, no freedom of expression, no freedom of right.
“They are speaking out in right of their brothers and sisters in their home country.”
Around 5:30 p.m. Saturday, an Edmonton Transit bus arrived on scene. Riot police escorted all of the individuals from inside the hall to the bus.
Police say the protesters left the area shortly after in a peaceful manner.
EPS says no arrests were made at the scene, but charges are pending against one man.