By David Shum
TORONTO – A First Nations’ blockade in the Napanee area between Belleville and Kingston, Ont. has disrupted VIA Rail service on the busy Toronto to Montreal corridor.
A travel advisory was issued by VIA Rail Wednesday morning for trains on the Toronto – Montréal and Toronto – Ottawa routes, in both directions.
Trains between Ottawa and Montréal are currently operating according to the regular schedule for now.
Officials say customers with reservations choosing not to travel can receive a full refund and those wishing to exchange their ticket for a later date may do so at no additional charge.
The trains affected are as follows:
Train 651: will be replaced by busses
Train 41: will be replaced by busses
Train 50: will be replaced by busses
Train 60: will be replaced by busses
Train 51: operating between Montréal and Ottawa and bus service from Ottawa to Toronto.
Three men were charged last week after demonstrators temporarily stopped all traffic on CN Rail tracks in eastern Ontario as part of a week-long protest calling for an inquiry into missing and murdered aboriginal women.
Those involved in the blockade vowed to step up their actions after a controversial parliamentary report into missing and murdered indigenous women rejected calls for a full public inquiry.
The release of the missing women report last week set off a firestorm of criticism from opposition critics, First Nation leaders and human rights groups.
-with files from The Canadian Press