Conservative leadership frontrunner Pierre Poilievre has defended those planning on attending Canada Day protests from disinformation stemming from a Twitter troll account masquerading as an organizer.
“The same Liberals who say they need to censor the internet to stop disinformation have been caught spreading tweets from a fake Twitter account set up to misrepresent Convoy protesters,” Poilievre tweeted on Monday.
“The best way for Liberals to fight disinformation is to stop spreading it.”
The Twitter troll account in question is Canada Day Convoy (@CanDayConvoy). Whoever is running the account has been spreading some real news about planned events while utilizing language to suggest it’s an official account.
Interspersed between tidbits of real news are tweets taking highly contentious (if not untenable) positions to stir outrage and discredit the demonstrations before they even happen.
“BREAKING: We just got off the phone with the Ottawa Police. They are reversing course and allowing truckers and bikers to park close to Parliament Hill,” tweeted the fake account.
This is a straight-up lie. But it looks like official news from an organizer.
In reality, the City of Ottawa has announced several restrictions for Canada Day, including a motor vehicle control zone with police checkpoints to ban protesters’ vehicles around Parliament Hill. These remain in effect. Click here to read more on that.
There is no one organization currently in charge of setting up protests on Canada Day, but Veterans 4 Freedom (@Vets4FreeCanada), veteran James Topp (Canada Marches), previous Freedom and Biker Convoy demonstrators, and journalist Andy Lee have taken lead roles.
We reached out to Lee to the real organizers, who confirmed that the account doesn’t belong to anyone involved in organizing Canada Day protests.