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Sault bridge owners to respect protesters' rights to express themselves after teepee set up
SAULT STE. MARIE -- Overnight in Sault Ste. Marie, a teepee was set up and protesters or "land defenders," as they call themselves, spent the night sleeping in front of the International Bridge.
The main entrance to the Ontario side of the bridge was shut down shortly after 2 p.m Monday.
Protesters say they are there to show support for Wet'suwet'en First Nation in B.C.
Candace Day Neveau, one of the protesters, said there is no timeline for the protest.
Police have reopened Huron Street between Queen Street West and Albert Street West.
The back entrance to the bridge that connects to the U.S. is open to everyone. Travellers going to the U.S. are asked to use the Carmen's Way entrance to the bridge and those coming from the U.S. are being directed to use the Queen Street West exit.
As of 8:30 a.m., CTV News has been told five land defenders remain on site. They are staying warm inside the teepee.
A new sign has been hung across the entrance to the bridge that says "RCMP OFF WET’SUWET’EN LAND." The sign is beside Monday's “SHUT DOWN CANADA” sign.
A tent is also set up behind the signs.
When asked if the company that owns Sault Ste. Marie's International Bridge wants protesters off their property, officials say "as long as people are being respectful, we will be respectful to their rights to express their needs and views."
Todd Kealey is a communications official for The Federal Bridge Corporation Limited. He says the company has asked the Sault police to evaluate the situation and that police are in control of it.