Trudeau did not speak at the event, although he applauded and nodded along with some of the other speakers, including a time when one speaker said there is no middle ground on racism. At another point, he shouted “Amen” along with other protesters after a speaker discussed the promotion of love and justice.
Some in the crowd shouted at him to oppose U.S. President Donald Trump, CTVnews reported.
Although many celebrities have been explicit about their support for protesters in the United States, the support of world leaders has been silenced, despite global protests under the slogan Black Lives Matter.
The crowd had a moment of silence for nearly nine minutes – the amount of time that former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin kept his knee pressed to Floyd’s neck. During this silence, many also knelt down.
Trudeau joined them.
The Ottawa police service told CTVnews in a statement that the march was peaceful. “We respect the rights of our residents and community members to speak when they see injustices and understand the community’s deep grief and frustration,” they said. “Our role is to provide a safe space for people to suffer and be heard.”
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