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Unprecedented in the history of Canada, Ottawa, Hamilton, Windsor, London, Winnipeg, Québec, Lyon (France) and other cities will host solidarity demos.

Terrorising, lying, beating up, sequestering, threatening with rape, torturing… these were the tasks taken on by the police force during the protests against the G20 which took place in Toronto last week. The level of repression that was deployed then far exceeds the violence that took place during historical events such as the Monday of the truncheons (1968), the October Crisis (1970) or the Summit of the Americas (2001).

For three days, the police harassed anyone that might have looked like a protester: confi scating fl ags, placards, earplugs, bandanas, goggles, epinens, ID-ing, undertaking illegal searches, arrests, and constant intimidation…

Everything was orchestrated – including resorting to numerous illegal acts – to terrorize political dissidence. The fi rst demo on Friday was so restrained by the police that it could move only move under their command. We were constantly encircled. The following evening, heavily armed police broke into an apartment and kidnapped more than a dozen activists while they were sleeping.

Pic: Toronto

The demo on Saturday, which brought together at least 20 000 people, ended with a series of direct actions targeting police vehicles, banks and multinationals. In total, we counted around 50 actions of this nature. Despite thousands of cops and more than a billion dollars spent on repression, a fringe of the movement thus was able to foil the police and disturb the business-as-usual routine of commerce and consumption. The police were outsmarted… They responded with increasing the violence, and numerous kidnappings and beatings took place.

Saturday evening, courageously armed with machine guns, the police entered an organizers coop to arrest – without warrant – organizers from Montreal. It got even tenser on Sunday, which started off with the arrest of more than 50 activists who were sleeping on the campus of the University of Toronto. Political, linguistic and social profi ling took place as the cops targeted any person wearing black, who was then detained and searched. During the day, the tension was so high that anyone who spoke French or had a car registered in Quebec was interrogated, even imprisoned.

Police were patrolling the streets in unmarked cars and hit without warning.

No one was safe in the city of Toronto.
Many Montrealers were kidnapped while they were walking towards the meeting point to get to the buses returning home. Asking for one’s rights was useless at this point. The police were simply focused on spreading terror.

During the weekend, inside the temporary detention centre, arrested women aged 17-25 experienced sexual profi ling, threats and sexual harassment from the police. Most women were strippedsearched by men. A woman who later spoke to the media witnessed women being traumatized and intimidated by the police inside the prison itself. Other women detainees were threatened with rape and collective rape by the police to deter them from participating in any future political actions. In addition, many lesbian, gay and trans people were detained separately from other political prisoners, away in a separate cell just for being queer.

A mass arrest targeting approximately 900 protesters denouncing the G20 on the streets in Toronto is unprecedented. In Canada broader social violence perpetuated by state forces is ongoing daily, especially targeting indigenous people, immigrant communities, LGBT communities, street-involved youth, low income communities and people living on the streets. Marginalized communities face the reality of police and state violence daily. It is within this context that we denounce the police violence on the streets in Toronto and we demand for all our comrades to be released from prison. We also stand in solidarity with communities and those who are under attack on a regular basis. To all those swept up in the mass arrests, as well as those who explicitly expressed that they were not participating in the protests, this is an opportunity to link your own experience of police brutality and state repression within a broader context, illustrating a historical pattern of repression against radical social movements and marginalized members of society. Today we stand in solidarity with all G20 political prisoners and all who faced police repression but also we aim to express our support towards all communities facing on going repression and criminalization on a regular basis.

As a result, there were more than 900 arrests in two days. This is unprecedented in Canadian history. As usual, the media – a watchdog of the capitalist, patriarchal and racist society we live in – focused on violence directed towards the State and property rather than the brutal and systematic violence enacted on the people, shutting off any claim to freedom and equality. The most powerful of the world beat up the ones who dare criticize their infi nite power and journalists have nothing better to do than to cry over a few broken windows… That’s journalistic objectivity for you!

We do not have to be ashamed of our fi ght against multinationals. Violence towards property is minimal and symbolic and does not compare to the violence of the powerful who are responsible for the suffering of the majority of the people on this planet and who share, without shame, the world’s resources and beat up anyone who dares to question the destruction of the planet, oppression and exploitation. There is too much suffering and injustice on this earth. We can only rely on ourselves to offer to the oppressors of this world resistance which is worthy of that name.

Source: http://www.clac2010.net/sites/default/files/infoclac.pdf