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Pro-Palestinian rally at Regina railyard sees police response, arrests made

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A pro-Palestinian protest in Regina sought to disrupt rail traffic in the city’s centre on Wednesday.

The demonstration – organized by the non-profit “Good Trouble Network YQR” – involved a group of residents blocking the CPKC railway crossing at Albert Street and Saskatchewan Drive.

In a social media post, the group said the protest coincided with the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.

“This blockade is our signal to the government that we will not stand down until a permanent ceasefire is reached, even if it means putting our bodies on the line against the continued flow of capital,” the post read.

In a statement to CTV News Wednesday afternoon, CPKC said it was aware of the protest and was monitoring the situation.

“We are cooperating with Regina Police Service (RPS) to ensure trespassers are kept safely away from live railroad tracks,” the statement read.

According to RPS, the protest began at around 10:30 Wednesday morning – and was concluded by 4 p.m.

As the railyard is under the jurisdiction of CP Rail Police, RPS said that all arrests, tickets and charges were made under the Railway Safety Act.

“RPS assisted CP Rail Police in making arrests in relation to this event,” police said. “No one was taken into RPS custody.”

RPS did not say how many arrests were made – and forwarded all injuries to CP Rail.

“The Regina Police Service acknowledges citizen’s rights to peaceful protest,” RPS said.

“The job of our officers is to ensure the safety of those in the area and to keep the public peace.”

In a statement published on Dec. 1, the Good Trouble Network YQR outlined that five demonstrators were arrested three hours into the protest.

“Supporters from the crowd quickly and spontaneously took over on the tracks and held the line for two more hours before police walked a train through the line, leaving blockaders with the option of leaving the tracks or being struck by a train,” the statement read.

The non-profit went on to say that throughout the five hour demonstration, the gathered crowd was “met with met by supportive honks and cheers from passing vehicles, including transport trucks.”

The group called the demonstration a “strong message.”

Since Oct. 7, more than 15,000 people have died in the Israel-Hamas conflict – with a further 40,000 wounded.

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