Teepee erected in ceremony on Parliament Hill after opposition from police
Canada Day celebrations expected to draw big crowds to Parliament Hill on July 1
A group of Indigenous people and supporters headed to Parliament Hill Wednesday night to try to perform a ceremony and erect a teepee, but faced opposition from police.
A large crowd had gathered as part of a four-day Canada Day protest.
Demonstrator tells me she is content the ceremony was able to continue but people are not happy the teepee isn't on Parliament Hill grounds. <a href="https://t.co/jpOYBpt34d">pic.twitter.com/jpOYBpt34d</a>—@eskura
A video on social media showed officers removing at least one person from the area. CBC's Elyse Skura said at least nine people were arrested and detained. Those individuals were later released.
The teepee was eventually erected in a ceremony early Thursday morning.
This is what it's now like on <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/ParliamentHill?src=hash">#ParliamentHill</a>, where <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Indigenous?src=hash">#Indigenous</a> demonstrators and police seemed to be at a deadlock hours ago. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/OttNews?src=hash">#OttNews</a> <a href="https://t.co/a9WbQmxy3Z">pic.twitter.com/a9WbQmxy3Z</a>—@eskura
"It is right by the east entrance and police have set up metal barriers that restrict access from that area to the rest of the Hill," Skura reported. "The demonstrators say they are not happy and don't consider this a compromise because they want to be on the grounds, but they are satisfied they could continue their ceremony."
Several of the individuals reported receiving a notice of trespass, which means they can't return to Parliament Hill for six months.
Later, however, there were cheers as people who had been detained appeared back on site.
Big cheers as demonstrators who were detained earlier are allowed back in. <br><br>"You won't be arrested," calls Jocelyn Wabano-Iatail. <a href="https://t.co/1tHBCwZ7k2">pic.twitter.com/1tHBCwZ7k2</a>—@eskura
According to the CBC's Omar Dabaghi-Pacheco, "demonstrators were also heard telling police they did not feel they needed a permit for what they considered a First Nations religious ceremony on Parliament Hill."
Organizers say the demonstration marks the first day of a "reoccupation" ceremony to counter Canada's upcoming 150th anniversary celebrations.
A statement ahead of the event said the ceremony "aims to simultaneously unsettle the 150th anniversary while asserting place-based relationship on our lands that were never ceded, and to educate the general public on the atrocities that the occupying government continues to inflict on our Nation's and our Mother."
Parliament Hill Canada Day celebrations draw large crowds every year.
"We don't protest. And we don't occupy." <br><br>Kyle Chiblow is one of 9 people issued a notice of trespass, can't return to the Hill for 6 mths. <a href="https://t.co/ixOAEpi3Hw">pic.twitter.com/ixOAEpi3Hw</a>—@eskura
With files from Elyse Skura, Omar Dabaghi-Pacheco and The Canadian Press