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Convoy protest set to disrupt traffic in Helsinki

Police are predicting traffic problems as a result of the protest.

Similar 'convoy' protests have occurred in Canada, including this one on Thursday in Toronto. Image: Cole Burston / AFP

The Convoy Finland protest starts on Friday in Helsinki, with demonstrators saying they plan to gather from 6pm until 10pm in protest at Covid restrictions and high fuel costs.

The protest will continue on Saturday from 10am until 10pm, according to organisers.

The protesters' demands include the end of all Covid-related restrictions in Finland, a 50 percent reduction in fuel taxes, and the resignation of the current government.

Organisers have told police that they plan to use civil disobedience tactics to press their claims. Police say they believe the aim is to block off traffic into and out of central Helsinki.

Police ban heavy goods vehicles from the centre

Police have allocated additional resources to police the protest, and brought in a ban on heavy goods vehicles in the city centre. Vehicles over 12 metres long will require a special permit to enter the area where restrictions are in force at the centre of the capital.

Police have urged those who want to express their opinion to do so at Citizens Square opposite parliament.

Traffic disruption could last a while

Police have not yet offered an estimate on how many participants are likely to attend, but say the event could cause significant and long-lasting traffic disruption.

The Convoy Finland 2022 group on Facebook has some 63,000 members.

Police are recommending motorists avoid the city centre from Friday evening until the protest has ended, and say they will offer updates in real-time via their Twitter account. (siirryt toiseen palveluun)

Helsinki Region Transport (HSL) warned on Thursday that the demonstration could cause delays to public transport in central Helsinki on Friday evening. Disruption could affect trams and buses, with some diversions expected to be in operation.

HSL warned travellers to allow extra time for their journeys.

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