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KELOWNA, British Columbia (LifeSiteNews) – During an unannounced tour of British Columbia earlier this week, handlers for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau reportedly threatened media that police would expel any reporter from the area should they shout questions at him.
The Kelowna Daily Courier wrote July 18 that the PMs handlers said “shouted queries would result in police-assisted eviction from the various premises.”
Trudeau was in Kelowna on Monday to tour a Boys and Girls Club, a stand that sells fruit, and a packinghouse. His visit to British Columbia was vague in that his website never said where in the province he would be but only that it would be in the “Interior Region, British Columbia.”
After the Daily Courier’s article went viral, many in both mainstream and independent media were quick to blast Trudeau for allegedly stifling the press.
“I’ve covered four sitting PMs, including this current one. Been around for presidents and other dignitaries visiting. I’ve never heard of this sort of thing with media at an event,” tweeted Brian Lilley of the Toronto Sun.
Peter Menzies, former Calgary Herald editor and publisher, tweeted, “These are not the instincts of people whom you want regulating the Internet or deciding which media qualifying for subsidies.”
Marieke Walsh with the Globe and Mail tweeted, “This sort of directive should result in all reporters shouting questions. Asking questions during photo-ops is fair game and standard practice elsewhere, including at the White House.”
Conservative Party of Canada MP and leadership candidate Leslyn Lewis blasted Trudeau on Twitter.
“The Prime Minister of our country attending an event and dictating to media about being obedient, silent, serfs. Imagine how he will treat the media and his peasants when Bill C-11 passes,” Lewis wrote.
Trudeau’s office yesterday in a statement denied that reporters were told they were not allowed to ask questions.
“Journalists must always be treated with the utmost respect and be able to do their jobs. Under no circumstances should journalists ever be threatened when covering a government or political event,” the note from Trudeau’s office said.
“Our office never instructed anyone to do this, and this is not how we operate. We have looked into the matter. It is our expectation that everyone involved in organizing government events treat journalists with respect and professionalism at all times.”
In recent days, Trudeau has made repeated trips to various locations across the nation and has been met with protesters at many locations. Indeed, some trips have been canceled without much notice.
While in British Columbia recently, Trudeau was met by a protester who said to him, “I’m a free citizen in hopefully a free country, standing on the sidewalk expressing my views.”
“Freedom is never free. You have to fight for it.”
While in British Columbia earlier in the year, Trudeau was met with disapproval from First Nations people, who said to him, “You’re a criminal,” and “You’re not welcome here.”
Under Trudeau, Canada had, and still has, some of the strictest COVID rules in the world, including up until recently banning the vaccine-free from flying, taking the train, or boat.
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