Live Updates: Day 6 of US-Canada border trucker blockade; Police working to remove protesters

Ambassador Bridge blockade clearing Saturday as police move in

A protester waves Canada and U.S. flags in the backup of a pickup truck as police in Windsor, Ontario, moved protesters away from the entrance to the Ambassador Bridge, which has been blocked this week to Detroit, Saturday, Feb. 12, 2022. This week's demonstrations at the Ambassador Bridge, downtown Ottawa and elsewhere have targeted vaccine mandates and other coronavirus restrictions. There is also an outpouring of fury toward Prime Minister Justin Trudeau who has called them a fringe of Canadian society. (AP Photo/Mike Householder) (Mike Householder)

DETROIT – Protesters are beginning to clear the blockade at the Ambassador Bridge in Windsor Saturday as police move in following days of disrupted travel and trade between the U.S. and Canada.

Police are reportedly pushing the crowd of protesters away from the bridge to help end the blockade. More have joined the group since the morning.

Windsor police began removing protesters from the site Saturday morning, despite a judge ruling Friday that demonstrators had until 7 p.m. Friday night to leave the area or be removed, if necessary. Many protesters were cleared out by 11 p.m. on Friday, but several stayed overnight and remained there Saturday morning.

Friday night: Protesters defy court order to end blockade at Ambassador Bridge

The judge’s ruling came after Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens sought an injunction this week to end the protests and the blockade that has caused international strife.

Canadian protesters gathered at the Ambassador Bridge earlier this week to denounce the nation’s COVID-19 mandates and restrictions. Truck drivers, who comprise the so-called “Freedom Convoy,” and civilian drivers parked their vehicles in an effort to disrupt travel -- which they have done for six days as of Saturday morning.

Related: Michigan police: Ramps to Ambassador Bridge remain closed as protesters removed

Commercial vehicles have been unable to move freely between Canada and the U.S. at the busiest international port for the nations, significantly disrupting trade and automakers’ ability to continue production.

Several automotive companies have shut down or restricted workflow at their plants for the coming week due to supply shortages caused by the blockade.

Police have asked protesters to leave the area peacefully on Saturday, after several demonstrators remained overnight Friday despite the court ruling. Canadian officials have threatened severe consequences for individuals who continue protesting after they’ve been told to leave.

Read more: Get Caught Up: Everything to know on day 6 of Ambassador Bridge blockade

On Friday, Canadian media reported that protestors would re-open one lane of the Ambassador Bridge as an “act of good faith,” but that did not happen. Ontario Premier Doug Ford declared a province-wide state of emergency amid the protests.

“To those who’ve attempted to disrupt our way of life by targeting our lifeline for food, fuel and goods across our borders, to those trying to force a political agenda through disruption, intimidation and chaos, my message to you is this: Your right to make a political statement does not outweigh the rights of thousands of workers to earn their living,” Ford said. “It does not outweigh our right to get food across our borders.”

About the Author:

Cassidy Johncox is a senior digital news editor covering stories across the spectrum, with a special focus on politics and community issues.