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GoFundMe freezes Freedom Convoy fundraiser after it hits $10 million as Ottawa city councillor presses prime minister to 'cut off' group's funds

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'They’re funding these mercenaries and that funding stream needs to get cut off.'

Photo by LARS HAGBERG/AFP via Getty Images

GoFundMe has paused the viral fundraising page for Canada truckers' 2022 Freedom Convoy after it hit $10 million on Wednesday, according to Fox News.

The fundraiser has been created to primarily offset costs of fuel and contribute to food and lodging for demonstrators.

Truckers and other demonstrators have been protesting in Canada's capital for at least the last week.

What are the details?

All new donations are disabled at the time of this reporting, and a note that states "Under Review" is now at the top of the crowdfunding page.

The note states, "This fundraiser is currently paused and under review to ensure it complies with our terms of service and applicable laws and regulations. Our team is working 24/7 and doing all we can to protect both organizers and donors. Thank you for your patience."

A spokesperson for the company told Fox on Monday that it needs to ensure that the funds will be sent to intended recipients.

"Recent events in Ottawa, Canada, have generated widespread discussion about the Freedom Convoy 2022 fundraiser on GoFundMe," the spokesperson explained. "We wanted to provide clarity around the actions that our global Trust & Safety and Customer Care teams take every day, just as they have with the Freedom Convoy fundraiser."

The company added that the company will continue to monitor the fundraiser to "ensure the funds are going to the intended recipients and that the fundraiser remains within our Terms of Service."

"Our monitoring includes maintaining close communication with the organizer as well as collaborating with local law enforcement," the company said in its statement. "This process takes time and may slow down the withdrawal process. If the fundraiser does violate our Terms of Service or does not directly benefit the intended beneficiary, we will remove it from the platform."

On Wednesday, City Councillor Diane Deans, who is also chair of the Ottawa Police Services Board, called on Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson as well as Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to petition GoFundMe to freeze protesters' access to the donations.

"They’re funding these mercenaries and that funding stream needs to get cut off,” she said, according to a Toronto Star report.

Fox reported that the page has "far exceeded the amount raised by Canada's major political parties last quarter."

The Star reported Thursday that the fundraiser is now the second largest in Canada, following a campaign created following the Humboldt Broncos 2018 bus crash.

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