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(en) Canada, Montreal - another take about the A day of protest against Quebec's Liberal Government April 14th

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Date Fri, 16 Apr 2004 19:58:11 +0200 (CEST)

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Approx 150 people (a record!) came to our demo to 'remember' that the
Liberal government isn't alone in cutbacks to social programs, that former
government Parti Québécois had a similar neoliberal agenda. Also, we
emphasized that the population of Quebec must not wait 'till the next
elections to change things by electing a new government, but rather change
must come now through struggle, self-organisation and direct action.
The march was vibrant and dynamic as we walked through Montreal's gay
village chanting anti-electoral and class struggle slogans. The march
ended at the offices of Parti Québécois elected mp André Boulerice. We
were unable to carry the symbolic action we had planned because the office
was closed and our planning wasn't tops. We officially ended the march
there but a large portion of the crowd continued protesting heading back
towards the downtown area. Interviews were given to a few local radio
stations. A few friends from Montreal's municipal workers union unofficial
'youth-wing' came. That was good.

Over 1000 people (!) gathered at Phillips Square for a militant march. A
good portion of the crowd was made up of Cegep students who were on strike
for the day. This is a good sign that radical anarchist-influenced
politics haven't lost contact with Quebec's ever present youth and student

The march was short, but quite sweet. We first entered and disrupted a
ritzy underground downtown shopping mall. A few protesters engaged in
'Proletarian Shopping' (theft). Then after marching outside a bit, the
march ended at the St-James hotel, were the most wealthy stay in Montreal.
Protesters stormed the entrance and chanted "You are rich coz we are
poor!" to onlooking ruling class scum. I personnally didn't make it
inside, but from what i hear the bourgeois were unimpressed and
arrongantly continued their leisure activities. Yes! it will take more to
hurt the rich! But this is a good start...

5hH30 'I NEVER VOTED FOR THAT!' - Large union and community group march
15 000 people. The usual boringness associated to marches organized by
union bureaucrats (bad music, bad slogans), however a good diversity
present : tenants unions, women's groups, a disabled block, children, etc.
Despite having other anarchist groups sign our call for an anarchist
contigent in the march. NEFAC-Mtl was the only group that had brought
banners and that was somewhat visible. At the end of the march we handed
out a few dozen copies of our free agitationnal 'Cause Commune'.

The demo ended in front of the Montreal offices of Quebec's Prime Minister
Jean Charest.

Like in Quebec City, the right-wing nationalist MLNQ was confronted by
anti-fascists from several groups (including us, RASH and CLAC). After a
short shouting match, the scene errupted into an all-out brawl. From what
i could see, not one punch was landed on us but many were landed on them.
Several of them were beaten to the ground, they were able to get back up,
but their faces were swollen, somewhat bloody and red. It is important to
note that their leader, Raymond Villeneuve, was present, but was able to
hide behind a few of his goons. After the confrontation, they left our
area of the demo to hang out closer to the cops.

Many protesters not knowing the MLNQ asked why we were so violent with
them. We explained how their anti-immigrant and anti-english positions
divide Quebec social movements. This was vastly accepted as good reason to
physically confront them when they attend large demos of these social

NEFAC-Mtl plans to issue a short statement to be signed by other
anti-fascists groups to explain our opposition to the MLNQ. It will be
usefull to have at the child-friendly, non-confrontational, Solidarity
Across Borders march for immigrant's rights. Also, we are presently the
only group publically opposing the MLNQ, so having other groups sign-on
will help to defend ourselves against possible attempts at revenge.

-Nic (NEFAC-Mtl member)
www.nefac.net (not functioning for a while)

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