UPDATE: VIA Rail cancels all trains across the country due to ongoing blockades

A protest blocking CN rail tracks

CN has announced that trains in eastern Canada will be shut down and VIA Rail passenger service will cease across the country due to ongoing blockades.

The first protest started a week ago in solidarity with hereditary chiefs of the Wet'suwet'en First Nation who oppose the Coastal GasLink natural gas project, and since then more than 400 trains have been cancelled.

The elected band councils of the nation support the pipeline, but protests have occurred from the site in B.C. all the way to Halifax, including a longstanding blockade of tracks in Belleville. 

There have also been multiple disputes between media trying to cover the protests and various police forces. 

Commuter rail services like Metrolinx will be able to continue operating.

The protestors have been served with a court order to disperse, but that order has yet to "be enforced and continues to be ignored," according to the company, while ones in Manitoba have been dismantled. 

CN also says the decision may lead to temporary layoffs. 

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau briefly spoke to reporters after touching down in Munich, saying the situation is being followed very closely. 

"We're a country with rule of law and we need to make sure that those laws are followed," he said. 

Transportation Minister Marc Garneau said he would be meeting with provincial and territorial counterparts tomorrow, as well as Indigenous leaders to "discuss a way forward."