COP15: the right to demonstrate compromised?

COP15: the right to demonstrate compromised ?

The police deployment planned for COP15 will be the largest in Montreal for 20 years. The situation worries the League of Rights and Freedoms (LDL), which fears that the right to demonstrate will be violated. Several citizen mobilizations are planned.

On several occasions, particularly in the context of demonstrations such as the Summit of the Americas in 2001 in Quebec or the student demonstrations in 2012, the right to demonstrate has been violated, recalls the LDL. The concrete security perimeters installed around the convention center for COP15 are undemocratic, she believes.

“On several occasions, the security forces delimited a space, often very restricted, in which the demonstrators had to confine themselves. This was the case in 2018 during the G7 in Quebec, with street restrictions, as in La Malbaie, with the establishment of a free expression zone circumscribed by fences. This type of practice clearly contributes to hindering the exercise of the right to demonstrate by citizens”, warns the LDL via press release.

“Demonstration and freedom of expression, ways of exercising democracy and participating as citizens in decision-making, are essential to raise awareness and move leaders- e-s, especially in the context of environmental crises,” says LDL coordinator Laurence Guénette.

COP15 will be held at the Palais des Congrès in Ville-Marie, from December 7 to 19.

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