Naked protesters target F1 Grand Prix, dozens arrested

Scores of protests flooded Montreal streets again Thursday night, this time targeting the opening festivities for this weekend’s Formula One Grand Prix, one of Canada’s largest tourist events, attracting as many as 300,000 visitors every year. Police however blocked the protesters from reaching the events, using the tactic of “kettling,” arresting dozens of protesters and cutting access to streets leading up to the Grand Prix celebrations.

The Montreal Gazette said the city centre was “a carnival” and called the demonstration “one of Montreal’s most colourful nightly student protests” even if police and protesters had a few clashes and foot chasing ensued throughout the evening.

The final tally of the evening was 37 people arrested, according to Montreal police quoted in the Gazette, while the CBC reported 39 arrests.

From the Montreal Gazette:

The downtown core was packed with Montrealers and tourists, eating dinner outside or roaming the sidewalks taking in the scene, as if it was all part of the season of summer festivals in Montreal.

Some smiled, laughed or covered their eyes at the sight of the naked marchers. Virtually everyone had their phones out, snapping photos.