Organizers of the Canadian truckers’ "Freedom Convoy" held their first press conference on Sunday and banned mainstream media outlets from attendin
Organizers of the Canadian truckers’ “Freedom Convoy” held their first press conference on Sunday and banned mainstream media outlets from attending.
“We omitted certain news agencies from this press conference, including the Toronto Star and the CBC who are banned from this press conference. And the reason they were banned is twofold,” one of the organizers, Benjamin Dichter, said at the press conference.
“First, this entire week the CBC, Toronto Star – Yahoo News were retweeting and reposting with a few others – kept putting stories out that our GoFundMe was frozen or suspended because of nefarious reasons. You know ‘right-wing truckers,’ ‘dangerous people,’ and it was hysterical.”
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News stories began circulating last week reporting the GoFundMe page for “Freedom Convoy 2022” was frozen and organizers needed to outline how the millions of dollars in raised funds would be spent.
Dichter reflected that when outlets such as the Toronto Sun reported that the account was frozen, he contacted fellow organizer Tamara Lich to see if everything was okay and found GoFundMe was helpful.
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“And she’s like, ‘I just got off the phone with them 45 minutes ago. They’re great. They’re helping out. Everything’s gonna be sorted out,’” he explained of their conversation.
He called the reporting “purely just a fake story” that was “probably” working to “sabotage the donations that were coming in.”
A GoFundMe spokesperson told Fox Digital on Monday that the organizers had provided a detailed plan on how the funds would be spent and that $1 million had been withdrawn for their effort. The spokesperson added that the company will continue working with organizers regarding the release of remaining funds.
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The Freedom Convoy of truckers left Vancouver for Ottawa on Jan. 23 to protest the federal government’s vaccine mandates for cross-border truckers and is calling for an end to coronavirus restrictions. The convoy reached Ottawa this weekend and was joined by thousands of other Canadians protesting the mandates.
The CBC, a government-funded Canadian news organization, also faced fierce backlash and mockery over the weekend after a host for the outlet suggested that Russia was behind the wildly popular protest.
“I do ask that because given Canada’s support of Ukraine, in this current crisis with Russia, I don’t know if it’s far-fetched to ask,” CBC host Nil Koksal told Minister of Public Safety Marco Mendicino Friday.
“But there is concern that Russian actors could be continuing to fuel things as this protest grows. But perhaps even instigating it from, from the outset.”
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Koksal’s remarks set off a torrent of criticism and mockery on Twitter, with people slamming the current state of media and liberals for focusing on “Russia, Russia, Russia.”