Police in Toronto fired tear gas on protesters for a second straight day as new violence surrounding the G20 summit erupted and the arrest tally climbed above 500.
Yesterday’s clashes occurred as several hundred protesters marched on a temporary detention center for demonstrators arrested in riots on Saturday during which police used tear gas against the public for the first time ever in Canada’s most populous city.
A police spokeswoman confirmed that officers fired what are known as muzzle blasts, or “individual applications of tear gas” that are used against individuals at close range.
A Reuters witness in front of a former film studio in Toronto’s port area where police are detaining protesters said he heard a loud “thunk” and saw clouds of smoke billow before police charged, scattering the crowd.
The weekend violence started on Saturday afternoon after groups of masked anarchists broke away from a larger, peaceful demonstration against the Group of 20 summit of rich and emerging economies, which ended yesterday.
Protesters, many dressed in black gear, smashed windows of downtown stores and banks and torched police cars in a protest that police finally brought under control with tear gas and mass arrests.
A “large number” of people were detained in a raid at the University of Toronto’s downtown campus, and police said they seized weapons, including bricks, rocks and sticks.