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At least four undercover police officers infiltrated a protest against austerity measures and state violence on Friday night in downtown Montreal, which resulted in around nine arrests, according to Montreal police.

The march began around 8:30 p.m., after approximately 100 people gathered at Place Émilie-Gamelin.

One Concordia student, Katie Nelson, was hospitalized. She said an officer attacked her from behind. A Montreal police spokesperson couldn’t confirm the reasons for the arrests or injuries. He said officers dressed in “civilian clothes” were present, and that this is a “method” their department sometimes employ.

Jeremy Gauthier said he witnessed the incident involving Nelson. An undercover cop pushed Nelson to the ground after she confronted him about his identity, according to Gauthier.

The alleged assault was followed by a kettle—the act of officers circling protesters to confine them—at the corner of Logan St. and Lartigue Ave, he added.

Both Nelson and Zachary Savard, another protester, said one of the undercover officers pulled a gun out at one point. The Service de Police de la Ville de Montréal spokesperson couldn’t confirm this.

Savard said the incident occurred on de Maisonneuve Blvd. after he and a few others asked whether members of their group were disguised officers.

“As we came to them, they just took a gun out, and said move,” Savard said.

Tensions quickly escalated as two of the plainclothes officers arrested a protester. They dragged him to a parking lot behind Ste. Catherine St. and Berri St. Members of the media, including The Link, followed, but were chased away by one undercover cop.

The cop shoved one man face first into the ground and pushed an editor from The Link as well, screaming and chasing away those nearby.

Christoff came out Friday night to protest austerity budget cuts implemented by the Liberal-majority Quebec government in recent years.

“In order to challenge those cuts from the government, I think that autonomous demonstrations are really essential and important,” he said. “We’ve seen major labour unions take action—which is good—but at the same time, we need to see community-based response.”

Undercover Cops Infiltrate Night Protest | News – The Link (external - login to view)


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