Nova Scotia

Mayor meets veterans, Occupy protesters

Mayor Peter Kelly is talking with veterans and demonstrators to try to find a compromise over the use of Grand Parade.

Mayor Peter Kelly is talking with veterans and demonstrators to try to find a compromise over the use of Grand Parade.

The CBC's Michael Dick said Kelly, three veterans and three Occupy Nova Scotia protesters met in a tent in the square Friday afternoon.

Kelly told the CBC News that there is not room for Remembrance Day events and demonstrators. "We have over 5,000 people … we have the vets, we have the armed forces, we have girl guides, cubs, scouts and other organizations, we have the public," he said.

Halifax Mayor Peter Kelly is occupying a tent with veterans and demonstrators to negotiate a Grand Parade compromise. (CBC)

"This place is full and we need every space we can get, so we asked for it. We need days in advance to prepare for it. We have to clean up, we have to spray down the monument. We have to prepare the grounds. We have to put up banners, do repairs."

Kelly said that he hopes demonstrators will respect the city's obligations. There was no discussions of consequences if they demonstrators stay put.

Kelly said the offer still stood to find a new location for the demonstration.

Earlier this week, Kelly told the protesters to leave by Nov. 6. He said the city needs time to clean up for an Atlantic Jewish Council event and a Remembrance Day ceremony.

Jean Marie Deveaux, president of the Nova Scotia-Nunavut Command of the Royal Canadian Legion, said the time has come for the demonstrators to move on.

"They have made their point; we know what they are rallying for," she said.

"All we ask is that they let us have the cenotaph for one day to remember our veterans. I have a lot of veterans who are in wheelchairs and a lot of veterans who can't get out anymore and that is their special day."

The demonstrators have been camped out in the square across from City Hall since Oct. 15.

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