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  • 19

    Quebec Nationalists Interrupt Prince Charles Tour
    Activism; Posted on: 2009-11-11 16:23:06 [ Printer friendly / Instant flyer ]
    Prince Charles's official visit to Canada has been marred by anti-monarchy protests as a group of Quebec nationalists clashed with riot police during a demonstration in Montreal.

    The group staged a sit-in protest outside the regimental hall of the Black Watch of Canada last night. More than 100 protesters held a demonstration as Charles, who is colonel-in-chief of the regiment, was due to present new regimental colours. The arrival of the prince and Camilla Parker-Bowles, the Duchess of Cornwall, was delayed by 40 minutes as police cleared the streets.

    Waving the provincial flag of Quebec and anti-royal placards, protesters chanted "Majesty go home" and the independence call "The Quebecois in Quebec". Some of the group threw eggs at soldiers leaving the regimental hall before police arrived.

    A Canadian riot unit was called and began forcing the group away from the hall's entrance but scuffles broke out as demonstrators clashed with officers carrying shields and batons. The protesters were eventually pushed down a side road and the prince – dressed in full military uniform complete with beret and sporran – and duchess were able to enter.

    The prince reportedly apologised to people in the hall for being delayed. "First of all I just wanted to say how very sorry my wife and I are to have kept you all waiting so long – I hear there's a little local disturbance," he was quoted as saying.

    Julien Gaudeau, a spokesman for the militant nationalist group Réseau de Résistance du Québecois, which organised the protest, said the prince was "a symbol of power given by the blood".

    "We don't want this kind of symbol in Quebec, more than 80% of the population in Quebec is opposed to the monarchy," he said. "In every other province, despite the numbers being low (in the polls) they are still pro-monarchy. The only one that isn't is Quebec. That's just one more reason for us to separate."

    A Clarence House spokesman accompanying Charles and Camilla on the trip said they had been made to feel "very welcome throughout their visit to Canada".


    News Source: guardian uk


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