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UPDATE (with video): Two women, one man arrested at TRU over Trans Mountain protest

3:30 p.m.

An investigation of mischief and assault is underway following this morning's demonstration at TRU.

Kamloops Mounties say two women and one man were arrested after they disrupted a meeting in the Campus Activity Centre, just after 9:30 a.m.

The university called police when campus security members were assaulted, says Cpl. Jodi Shelkie in a press release.

“As well, the protesters had allegedly damaged property by pouring paint over the sidewalk and walls outside the activity centre,” she says.

Charges have not been formally laid.

“The RCMP fully support the right to peaceful and safe protest,” says Shelkie, “but businesses also have the right to conduct meetings. No one has the right to damage property or to put someone else at risk. As soon as we see a situation where property is getting damaged or the public is at risk then we must step in.”

Mounties are still in the process of confirming the identities of the three who were arrested, according to the release.

After police made the arrests, the other demonstrators left the area peacefully.

To see the demonstration, check out the video below. It was posted to Facebook by Snutetkwe Manuel.

1:45 p.m.

KamloopsMatters can confirm Justice Frank Iacobucci was at TRU today for a roundtable meeting.

Following the Federal Court of Appeal’s decision on the Trans Mountain pipeline, to overturn the federal Liberals' approval of the project, the Government of Canada reinitiated Phase III consultations. The government appointed Iacobucci to oversee consultations with 117 Indigenous groups impacted by the pipeline.

In its decision, the court concluded the federal government failed in its duty to engage in meaningful consultations with First Nations before giving the green light to the project.

"Natural Resources Canada is leading the Phase III consultation with Indigenous groups and Trans Mountain representatives are in attendance at today’s roundtable," Trans Mountain tells KamloopsMatters.

In an emailed statement, Natural Resources Canada says while it stands firmly behind the right to peaceful protest, “actions that could interfere with any group’s ability to safely participate in this process raises serious concerns.”

“Our priority is ensuring the safety and security of all participants as this process moves forward,” the statement reads.

Natural Resources Canada goes on to say, "These roundtables are a space for potentially impacted communities with varying views on the project to come together and help shape this process."

Kamloops Mounties have not provided more information at this hour.

11:45 a.m.

Kamloops Mounties arrested three people Monday morning (Dec. 10) at Thompson Rivers University (TRU).

Cpl. Jodi Shelkie says there was a demonstration at the Campus Activity Centre, and three protesters were taken away in handcuffs. 

“At this time, it’s very fluid. The situation is very fluid,” Shelkie tells KamloopsMatters, adding she’ll be releasing more information later this afternoon.

According to a tweet from Kanahus Manuel, an opponent of the Trans Mountain pipeline, her twin sister Mayuk Manuel was arrested following a pipeline roundtable meeting at the school.

Shelkie couldn't comment on what sparked the demonstration.

“We recognize that demonstrators have the right to lawful, peaceful and safe protests, but also, companies have the right to complete their work,” she says. “Obviously, the safety of the public and our officers is paramount.”

As a "precaution," TRU is restricting access to the Campus Activity Centre until 4:30 p.m.

 

In an emailed statement, TRU spokesperson Darshan Lindsay says the incident (and the protest) was related to a private event.

"It was not a TRU event, but a function held by a third party," she says.

Editor's note: This story was updated on Dec. 11 to include the statement from Natural Resources Canada.




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Tereza Verenca

About the Author: Tereza Verenca

Tereza Verenca is a multimedia journalist who covers all things Kamloops!
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