4 arrested at pro-Palestinian protest in Toronto that blocked rail line

Four people have been arrested at a pro-Palestinian protest on Tuesday that blocked a rail line in Toronto’s west end, police say.The protest was near Pelham Avenue and Osler Street, close to Dupont Street and Dundas Street West, on railway tracks that belong to CPKC, a combination of Canadian Pacific and Kansas City Southern railways.World Beyond War, a group that defines itself as a “global nonviolent movement” against war, said in a news release on Tuesday that demonstrators were calling on the Canadian government to impose an arms embargo on Israel as the Israel-Hamas war continues. According to the group, the plan was to shut down freight services from Canada to the U.S. to show solidarity with Palestinians starving in Gaza.CPKC did not respond to a request for comment.Dalia Awwad, spokesperson for the advocacy group Palestinian Youth Movement, said in the release that demonstrators are urging the federal government to act.”For months, as calls from our families and friends in Gaza have grown increasingly dire, we have written, phoned, and petitioned our MPs. We have held teach-ins, community meetings and town halls,” Awwad said in the release.”We have flyered, marched, picketed, and rallied at every government office you can name. And yet still the Canadian government has refused to act decisively to save Palestinian lives and impose a full arms embargo on Israel,” Awwad added. “So we have no choice but escalate, and stop the weapons being sent to and from Israel ourselves.”Most Liberal MPs, including cabinet ministers, joined the NDP in backing a motion last month calling for an end to new export permits for arms bound for Israel. The motion was heavily amended by the Liberals before going to a vote.Confusion over what the motion actually does in practice grew in the days since — with some groups arguing it amounted to an arms embargo and others saying it simply reinforced business as usual.Israel has condemned the motion.Police said they expect to know by Wednesday morning if the four will be charged and what those charges will be.Shortly after 9 p.m., police said the protesters had dispersed and the tracks were clear.World Beyond War, a group that defines itself as a ‘global nonviolent movement’ against war, said in a news release on Tuesday that demonstrators were calling on the Canadian government to impose an arms embargo on Israel as the Israel-Hamas war continues. (Evan Mitsui/CBC)Toronto police face protesters at the rally near Pelham Avenue and Osler Street. (Evan Mitsui/CBC)Protesters hold a Palestinian flag aloft during the rally that lasted for hours. (Evan Mitsui/CBC)

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