February 14 - A rail blockade that halted train traffic to and from the Port of Prince Rupert is lifted as First Nations leaders agree to meet with federal and provincial politicians.
Two hereditary Wet'suwet'en chiefs start a constitutional challenge of fossil fuel projects, as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau calls for demonstrators across the country to observe the rule of law.
Without their consent, the project can not be built, they say, and they've repeatedly gone to court to stop it - without success. The railway says blockades have ended in Manitoba and may come down soon in British Columbia, but the orders of a court in Ontario have yet to be enforced and continue to be ignored.
Blockade organizers across Canada have said they are acting in solidarity with those opposed to a pipeline project that crosses the traditional territory of the Wet'suwet'en First Nation near Houston, British Columbia.
Coastal GasLink has signed agreements with all 20 elected band councils along the pipeline route.More news: 5G iPhone and iPad Pro arriving in the fall
He says Canada is a country of laws and those laws must be enforced, but "getting the balance right" is important.
"With over 400 trains cancelled during the last week and new protests that emerged at strategic locations on our mainline, we have decided that a progressive shutdown of our eastern Canadian operations is the responsible approach to take for the safety of our employees and the protesters", said JJ Ruest, president and chief executive officer at CN in a news release.
CN spokesman Jonathan Abecassis confirmed Friday morning the New Hazelton blockade had been lifted.
Via Rail announced on Thursday that it would have no choice but to shut down services, which mostly utilize CN track, as well.
Meanwhile, other blockades have been erected across the country in solidarity, disrupting rail lines and ports.More news: Ericsson pulls out of MWC 2020 as Coronavirus concerns intensify
There is a risk of seeing the disruptions merely as interference with the operations of profit-making companies, but they affect all Canadians, he told a news conference Friday in Toronto.
Teamsters Canada, the country's largest union in the transportation sector, called on the federal government to intervene.
Federal Transport Minister Marc Garneau said freedom of expression and the right to peaceful protest are among the most cherished of rights, but added he is "deeply concerned" about the disruption of rail services. The Wet'suwet'en hereditary governance system predates confederation and they are still here today.
"We can't just use force", he said in the legislature. Vancouver Police arrested more than 50 people this week enforcing an injunction order against people blocking access to Vancouver area ports.More news: Bieber Gave Jimmy Fallon The Most Hilarious Canadian Hockey Lesson