WINNIPEG, CANADA (Reuters) – Protesters toppled statues of Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth II in the Canadian city of Winnipeg, at a time when the remains of hundreds of palaces were discovered in unidentified graves in Canada. ancient aboriginal schools.
“No pride in genocide,” a crowd chanted before statues of kings were toppled.
The event took place on Thursday, Canada Day, which is traditionally celebrated across the country.
However, many cities suppressed the events this year, as the Indian children scandal caused Canadians to assimilate their colonial history. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said today would be a “time for reflection”.
Nearly 1,000 unmarked graves have been found in former boarding schools in British Columbia and Saskatchewan, which were primarily run by the Catholic Church and funded by the government.
For 165 years until 1996, schools forcibly separated Indigenous children from their families, subjecting them to malnutrition, physical and sexual abuse in what the Truth and Reconciliation Commission called a “cultural genocide” in 2015.
In Winnipeg, a crowd applauded the fall of a statue of Queen Victoria in front of the Manitoba Provincial Legislature. The protesters, many of them dressed in orange, kicked the toppled statue and danced around it. The pedestal and pedestal are covered with red painted hand marks.
They also toppled a nearby statue of Queen Elizabeth, Canada’s current head of state, while Victoria ruled from 1837 to 1901, when Canada was part of the British Empire.
Protests in support of Aboriginal children were also held Thursday in Toronto, Canada’s financial hub, while the #CancelCanadaDay (“Cancel Canada Day”) rally in the capital, Ottawa, attracted thousands of people to support victims and survivors of the boarding school system.
Vigils and rallies were held in other parts of the country. Many of the participants wore orange clothes that became a symbol of the movement.
In his message for Canada Day, Trudeau said the discoveries of the remains of old school children “really prompted us to reflect on the historical failures of our country.” He said that injustice still existed for Aboriginal peoples and many others in Canada.
A spokesman for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the government condemned any attack on the Queen’s statues.
“We stand with the Aboriginal Canadian community in the wake of these tragic discoveries, are closely monitoring these issues and continue to engage with the Canadian government on Aboriginal affairs,” he said.