Mass arrests in Quebec

This video is called 250,000+ Defy Anti-Protest Law in Quebec.

By Keith Jones:

Quebec police mount mass arrests in bid to break student strike

25 May 2012

After Tuesday’s 150,000-strong demonstration supporting Quebec’s striking students and opposing the provincial Liberal government’s draconian Bill 78, the state has intensified its campaign of repression.

Police arrested almost 700 protesters in Montreal and Quebec City Wednesday evening.

Quebec City Police arrested 176 people for demonstrating in violation of the sweeping new restrictions Bill 78 places on protests. Passed in less than 24 hours late last week, Bill 78 makes all demonstrations–whatever their cause—illegal unless organizers submit to the police in writing more than eight hours in advance the demonstration itinerary and duration, and abide by any changes demanded by the police.

In Montreal most of the arrests came when riot police suddenly turned on a peaceful three-hour protest, allegedly because demonstrators did not follow police instructions as to where they should proceed next. Having “kettled”—penned in and squeezed—the protesters, the police arrested all present, some 450 people. “The swift police action squeezed the mob together tighter and tighter as the officers advanced and some people begged to be let out,” reported the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. “One photographer was seen to be pushed to the ground and a piece of equipment was heard breaking.”

Those arrested in Montreal were not charged under Bill 78, which carries a minimum $1,000 fine for a first offense, but under a municipal bylaw imposing less drastic penalties.

Also Wednesday, Quebec Public Security Minister Robert Dutil indicated that charges under Bill 78 may soon be laid against the student organization CLASSE and its leaders. CLASSE (The Broader Coalition of the Association for Student-Union Solidarity), which represents about half of the over 150,000 striking students, has vowed not to submit to Bill 78. Shortly after Tuesday’s march began it led tens of thousands on a route different than that set by police.

See also here. And here.

Quebec’s Student Strike Turning Into a Citizens’ Revolt. Elizabeth Leier, Truthout: “The province of Quebec is no stranger to large and powerful social movements (the 1949 Asbestos Strike comes to mind, as does the Summit of the Americas in Quebec City, in 2001). However, the ongoing conflict between the provincial government and striking students and their supporters will go down in history as one of the province’s – indeed the country’s – biggest mass protests. On its 102nd day, the student movement is growing, as is the awareness of an ever more oppressive and corrupt government”: here.

One week after criminalizing Quebec’s 15-week-long student strike, the provincial Liberal government is apparently about to summon leaders of the student associations for talks: here.

From the Chilean Winter to the Maple Spring Solidarity: the Student Movements in Chile and Québec. Andrew Gavin Marshall, Andrew Gavin Marshall’s Blog: “For both of these movements to move forward, it is important to not only promote informal acts and statements of solidarity between the two movements, but to begin establishing direct and indirect ties between the movements … But first and foremost, it is important to educate the students in Québec about what is taking place in Chile, and the students in Chile about what is taking place in Québec. That is the basis for all other forms of cooperation”: here.

Montreal Pots And Pans Video Of Protest Against Bill 78 Goes Viral : here.

More than 1,200 people have been arrested in Quebec since the provincial Liberal government adopted emergency legislation May 19 that criminalizes the more than three-month-old student strike and places sweeping restrictions on the right to demonstrate: here.

“Pots and Pans” Protests for Freedom of Speech Spread Across Quebec Against Oppressive Government. Mark Karlin, BuzzFlash at Truthout: “Last week, BuzzFlash at Truthout wrote a commentary about the enduring and widespread student protest in Quebec – and the legal attempt to criminalize dissent that appears to be sweeping like an Iron Curtain across Western democracies. In short, to publicly protest in many cities of the so-called ‘free world’ is now a crime akin to committing an act of armed robbery. While not being a conspiratorialist, it would be hard to regard this as anything but a crackdown by global corporate/government institutions against any force that has the potential to expose the spoon-fed narrative of the status quo of the international 1 percent”: here.

Talks continue between Quebec government, student groups over tuition protests: here.

Quebec Premier Jean Charest suspended negotiations with university students aimed at ending weeks of protests over proposed tuition rises on Friday: here.

The Conservative government of Prime Minister Stephen Harper introduced back-to-work legislation Monday afternoon to illegalize a nation-wide strike by Canadian Pacific (CP) railway engineers and conductors: here. And here.

3 thoughts on “Mass arrests in Quebec

  1. Mine bosses want government to break rail strike

    Canada: Mining lobbyists demanded on Thursday that the federal government break a 4,800-strong strike at rail firm Canadian Pacific.

    Mining Association of Canada boss Pierre Gratton said the Teamsters’ action would hit shipments to and from mines.

    Engineers, conductors, traffic controllers and yard workers walked out on Wednesday over planned changes to conditions and pension cuts.


  2. Pingback: Quebec legislator arrested for free speech | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  3. Pingback: Quebec human rights violations condemned by UN | Dear Kitty. Some blog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.