Trudeau did not speak at the event, although he did clap and laugh with some of the other speakers, including a moment when a speaker asserted that there was no middle ground for racism. At another stage, he shouted “Amen” to other protesters after a speaker discussed promoting love and justice.
Some in the crowd shouted at him to stand up to US President Donald Trump, CTV News reported.
Although many celebrities in the United States have spoken out in support of the protesters, the support of world leaders has been muted despite protests featuring the slogan Black Lives Matter.
The crowd observed a moment of silence for about nine minutes – the amount of time former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin had been kneeling on Floyd’s neck. During this silence, many even took a knee.
Trudeau joined them.
The Ottawa Police Service told CitiNews in a statement that the march was peaceful. “We respect the right to speak out when our residents and community members see injustice and we understand the deep pain and frustration of the community,” they said. “Our role is to provide a safe place for people to grieve and listen.”