Protesters first gathered in the middle of the afternoon at Canada Place in downtown Montreal and began walking around 4:00 pm
Shortly after the start of the demonstration, police officers from the intervention group of the Police Department of the City of Montreal (SPVM) blocked René-Lévesque Boulevard, at the intersection of Mansfield Street, to encourage them to move to St. Catherine Street.
This is a less busy street and less dangerous for them, said Manuel Couture, a spokesman for the SPVM. They preferred to stay on the spot.
During their rally, which was just a stone's throw away from the Queen Elizabeth Hotel, they sang, pronounced speeches and chanted slogans. Several sat down and slept in the street. The crowd remained peaceful during the demonstration, confirmed the SPVM.
The number of protesters has decreased over the hours. In the middle of the evening, the police gave the
order to regain the sidewalks and clear the street. They subsequently arrested the 41 protesters who had not obeyed the orders for obstructing the work.
The decision was made at some point to reopen the streetexplained Agent Couture.
Brilliant action at the Jacques Cartier Bridge in the morning
Tuesday morning, three environmental activists were arrested after climbing on the structure of the Jacques Cartier Bridge. They denounced the
lack of significant actions in the fight against climate change and promised to reoffend.
The three activists, two women and one man, managed to climb the bridge armature at dawn. They briefly unfurled a banner and gave a speech broadcast live on Facebook before being quickly joined by a team of rescue specialists composed of firefighters and police officers from the Sûreté du Québec (SQ).
During the broadcast, one of the activists justified
an action that may seem extreme, but which, for us, is a realistic action. Now, we must disturb the daily, because this daily is killing us.
We are not wacky. Those who live in a world of unicorns are those who think that we can continue to live on a planet with finite resources and accelerated growth. It's impossible, you have to decrease, it's an emergency.
Other activists, gathered on the bicycle lane of the bridge, chanted slogans during the course of the scene.
Our plan of action is to act and disrupt the social order so that the authorities in place listen to us, because we are headed for an unimaginable climate catastrophe.
There are other ways to manifest, says Minister Bonnardel
The three activists could face charges of mischief, even endangering the lives of others, said criminal lawyer René Verret, Tuesday, on ICI RDI.
If charged and convicted, deterrence could be a very important element in the sentencehe added, noting that the judge could take into account the many delays experienced by motorists and the risks incurred by the interveners who had to climb on the structure.
The Minister of Transport, François Bonnardel, for his part indicated that he
strongly regretted that the motorists were taken hostage.
There are other ways to manifesthe commented.
The suspects will be questioned by the investigators, said Hugo Fournier, spokesman for the SQ. The Director of Criminal and Penal Prosecutions (DPCP) will then decide on the charges that will be laid against them.
People are recognized as having the right to protest. On the other hand, people do not have the right to commit a criminal offense when they do.
Fight against indifference
The gesture is part of a series of actions punches started Monday by Extinction Rebellion for two weeks.
In a statement issued during the event, Extinction Rebellion hailed the gesture that denounces
the lack of significant actions in the face of multiple crises.
The statement denounces, in particular, the plans for Trans Mountain and LNG Saguenay oil and gas pipelines.
The means taken by the group to be heard are up to the indifference of governments in the face of the climate emergency, proclaimed François Léger-Boyer, spokesperson of Extinction Rebellion, at the microphone of Patrick Masbourian, Tuesday morning .
There were 500,000 people on the streets of Montreal on September 27th. However, I do not get the impression that the government understood, because the next day, its proposal to fight climate change was to cut down trees.
We are here. We have made petitions, we have signed the pact, there are bills that have been tabled in the (National) Assembly, the government has turned its back. (…) We will increase our level of action. And now, we climb the Jacques Cartier Bridgeadded the spokesperson.
As a former Greenpeace activist, Liberal Party of Canada candidate Steven Guilbeault has, in the past, conducted similar operations, including climbing the CN Tower in Toronto in 2001 to pressure the government. Asked to comment on this morning's gesture, he said:
I've already done it. I decided to continue my political action otherwise.
Similar blows from the Extinction Rebellion movement have already occurred elsewhere in Canada, but also in many cities around the world such as London, Paris, Berlin, New York and Sydney.
In Canada, dozens of protesters have blocked highway bridges in at least three cities: Toronto, Halifax and Edmonton.
Extinction Rebellion was born in the United Kingdom at the end of 2018, at the initiative of academics in particular, and is inspired by the strategy of struggle for civil rights in the United States in the 1960s.
The movement has spread through social networks and today boasts 500 groups in 72 countries.
His actions must continue in the coming days.