Trudeau did not speak at the event, although he applauded and nodded along with several other speakers, including a time when a speaker stressed there was no middle ground on racism. At another point, he shouted “Amen” along with other protesters after a speaker discussed promoting love and justice.
Some in the crowd shouted at him to oppose US President Donald Trump, CTVnews reported.
Although many celebrities have openly talked about their support for protesters in the US, support from world leaders has been muted, despite global protests featuring the slogan Black Lives Matter.
The crowd was silent for almost nine minutes – the amount of time that former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin made his knees pressed against Floyd’s knees. During this silence, many take their knees too.
Trudeau joined them.
The Ottawa Police Station told CTVnews in a statement that the march was peaceful. “We respect the rights of citizens and our community members to speak when they see injustice and we understand the deep pain and frustration of the community,” they said. “Our role is to provide a safe space for people to grieve and be heard.”