Published on: July 1, 2017 | Last Updated: July 1, 2017 2:44 PM EDT
An anti-capitalist group briefly crashed the Canada Day party in Old Montreal Saturday, shouting slogans and tossing confetti into a crowd of tourists as riot police tagged along.
The march remained peaceful except for a brief verbal exchange between two self-professed patriots and some of the black-clad protesters.
“F— you! That’s my message,” said one of the hecklers, who also used homophobic slurs to deride the marchers.
The group, called the Convergence des luttes anticapitalistes (CLAC), mostly criticized the government’s treatment of indigenous peoples. Namely, that dozens of First Nations do not have access to clean drinking water and, as one marcher said, that “Canada was founded on stolen Native land.”
Though the CLAC did not make any of its members available for press interviews, they handed out flyers which included grievances about poverty, the arrests of indigenous protesters and the exploitation of the poor.
Ottawa’s decision to pour $500 million into the Canada 150 celebrations was also at issue.
Police far outnumbered protesters at the anti-Canada Day rally, with many officers carrying tear gas launchers, pepper spray and other crowd-control weapons. But other than some light heckling on both sides, the march remained peaceful.
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