Ottawa police say they are aware and ready for an event planned by the extremist organization Diagolon.

The controversial far right group is beginning what it calls a Road Rage Terror Tour of Canada in the nation’s capital Saturday.

Diagolon is founded by Jeremy Mackenzie, a self-described Raging Dissident and has far right and white supremacist views. The tour will then head to Vancouver, Kamloops, Edmonton, Saskatoon, Hamilton and end in Halifax on Aug. 4. 

The Ottawa Police Services told Capital Current that “although we do not have direct communication with the organizers and the specific location of the event remains unknown, we are taking this seriously and are fully prepared to respond to any situation that may arise.”

The statement continued to say that “OPS has plans in place for the deployment of officers, to ensure public safety and maintain order. Our officers are trained to monitor and manage demonstrations, and we are committed to taking action if any illegal activities or incidents of hate speech occur.

“We want to reassure the public that the safety and security of our community is our top priority. We have zero tolerance for hate speech and hate crimes.”

The force also said said they “will issue a public advisory to inform the community of traffic impacts and any security issues related to a demonstration, protest or major event” and “as always, we encourage the community to report any suspicious activity during any such event” in an email to Capital Current. 

Ottawa has been a focus for right wing protests since the month-long so-called Freedom Convoy occupation of downtown in February 2022. Last year the city hosted a Convoy 2.0 event as well.

While the Ottawa police are being relatively low key about this event, a local group is raising a large red flag.

Community Solidarity Ottawa (CSO) is warning locals about the nature of this group.

CSO says Diagolon encourages violence against marginalized groups, including immigrants, the LGBTQ community and other minorities 

“The Diagolon network is largely driven by anti-immigration sentiments and an underlying belief that Jewish people control every major institution,” a CSO spokesperson told Capital Current.

CSO is a volunteer nonprofit community group based in Ottawa dedicated to anti-fascist action and is calling on local leaders to speak out against Diagolon. CSO started during the 2022 Freedom Convoy as a measure to protect Ottawa locals. Now, their main role is providing volunteer security at Pride events. 

The exact time and venue of the Diagolon event is unknown. Other tour stops are planned in public parks. 

Along with speeches and networking with likeminded individuals, the event is a “financing opportunity” for the group which is selling tickets costing $60 and merchandise.

CSO said it’s difficult to estimate how many people will attend the event in Ottawa, but they have reason to believe that there will be at least a few dozen people.

“The figureheads of the Diagolon movement are setting out to different parts of Canada to meet their fans and charge money for speeches that seem to be similar to the content that they promote on their livestreams,” CSO said. 

Diagolon takes inspiration from formal white power and neo-Nazi groups, but it is a decentralized fan-based network. Diagolon has not had an official presence in Ottawa since the first Convoy.

“Ottawa has seen members of Diagolon intimidate people in public and put up hateful propaganda in public so it’s not out of the question that these kinds of things might appear in higher volumes in the community that this venue is hosted at,” the CSO official said.

Other prominent figures in the group include MacKenzie’s partner Morgan Guptill, Derek Harrison, and Alex Vriend.

CSO describes Diagolon as “white-supremacist and neo-Nazi.”

“The Diagolon network is a loose network, but (it is) also becoming more of a formalized group of Canadian white nationalists, and its leaders are a (group) of livestreamers that emerged from the Plaid Army collective,” CSO said. The Plaid Army has been accused of Islamophobia and antisemitism.

CSO is asking politicians to denounce Diagolon.

“We would like politicians to at least denounce it, make it abundantly clear that bigots are not welcome, and so they can spread the message further so that people in affected communities across the city might be aware of what’s going on,” the official said.

CSO is encouraging Ottawa residents to share information about the event with people they know who work at commercial venues and to share any information about white supremacist events in their neighbourhoods with

CSO advises people to be aware of religious garments and displays in their cars or property, and to stay in groups, and to reach out to local politicians if they see anything that makes them feel unsafe.