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06/26/2010

Peaceful beginnings, violent ending as G20 protests grip Toronto

A look at a full day of G20 protests across the city through the lenses of five staff photographers.

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RICHARD LAUTENS - Protesters have a bit of a love-in following the initial march. Tens of thousands came out to protest the G20 meetings this afternoon.  They marshalled at Queen's Park and marched through the streets.  Originally very peacefull, the protest turned ugly with smashed windows and the police public order unit finally coming in to quell the crowd at the intersection of College and University. 

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STEVE RUSSELL - Falun Gong and Falun Dafa practioners protest peacefully in the rain as a variety of protests directed at the G20 Summit are held at Queen's Park in Toronto.

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STEVE RUSSELL - A Uygur protests against China at Queen's Park get ready to march during a protest of  G20 Summit.

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BERNARD WEIL - Flowers were thrown at the riot police on Spadina Avenue.

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CARLOS OSORIO - Riot Police, some with flowers, stand their ground on Queen Street during the G20 protests.     

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STEVE RUSSELL -  Police in soft hats watch protesters walk by on Queen Street West. The police are backed up by officers in riot gear.

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STEVE RUSSELL - Police in riot gear watch over protesters of  the G20 Summit in Toronto. 

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CARLOS OSORIO - A protester weeps infront of a line of riot police, she said that she just wishes to be let through and have her right to protest in peace in Toronto's downtown core.

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BERNARD WEIL - Police guard Queen and John Streets.

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BERNARD WEIL - Protestors block police that surrounded their police car on Queen Street west.

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LUCAS OLENIUK - An anarchist attacks the media on Queen Street West.

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LUCAS OLENIUK - An anarchist group broke away from the main protest at Queen and Spadina and began to vandalize police cars, media trucks and storefronts throughout the city.

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LUCAS OLENIUK - Anarchists vandalize a police cruiser on Bay Street before setting it on fire.

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LUCAS OLENIUK - Protesters attack a police car at Bay and King during the G20 in downtown Toronto.

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LUCAS OLENIUK - Police regroup as Anarchist protesters wreak havoc in Toronto's downtown core during the G20 protests.

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LUCAS OLENIUK - Anarchists terrorized Yonge Street Saturday smashing windows and vandalizing anything that came into their path.      

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CARLOS OSORIO - A man finds a spot to rest after Anarchist protesters wreaked havoc in Toronto's downtown core during the G20 protests.

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STEVE RUSSELL - A security Guard rescues a customer from the ATM area of the TD back at Queen and Bay after Anarchists broke the window.

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LUCAS OLENIUK - An anarchist group travelling north on Yonge Street smashed windows.

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RICHARD LAUTENS - A window of Winners on College street gets smashed by a woman.Tens of thousands came out to protest the G20 meetings this afternoon.  They marshalled at Queen's Park and marched through the streets.  Originally very peacefull, the protest turned ugly with smashed windows and the police public order unit finally coming in to quell the crowd at the intersection of College and University.

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RICAHRD LAUTENS -  A chair get thrown through the window of  Tim Hortons near the corner of Yonge and College.

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RICHARD LAUTENS - Police fire into the crowd on University at College.

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LUCAS OLENIUK - The riot ended at Queens Park but there were little outbreaks across the downtown.

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RICHARD LAUTENS - A man tries to talk to one of the officers in the line at college and University.

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CARLOS OSORIO - Protesters clash with police at Queen's Park during the G20 protests.

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STEVE RUSSELL - A woman is overcome by emotion on Yonge Street after violence broke out in protests for  G20 Summit.

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STEVE RUSSELL - Police arrest a pair of protesters on College Street near Queen's Park.

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STEVE RUSSELL - A protester breaks up a police car at Queen Street West near Spadina, two damaged police cars were left on the street during a protest of  G20 Summit.

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STEVE RUSSELL - A protester is overcome by smoke after attempting to put out a fire in a police car at Queen Street West near Spadina.

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STEVE RUSSELL - The first of two cruisers burns on Queen Street West near Spadina, two damaged police cars were left on the street.

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CARLOS OSORIO - Demonstrators clash with police at College and University as the sun sets.     

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RICHARD LAUTENS - The police finally move in on protesters who refused to move, kicking some to get up just south of the Legislature.     

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STEVE RUSSELL - The window at the Starbucks at Queen and John is broken during a protest of  G20 Summit.        

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I wonder what the anarchists were trying to accomplish by attacking the media, the only thing that is going to do is anger journalists which will make the subconsciously show them in a very negative way.

Amazing photos of the riots/protest though, keep up the good work, stay safe out there. Hopefully no journalists, police, or innocent bystanders get/have been hurt seriously.

Great pictures!

I See hate crimes in these acts of anarchy. That include the one things that usually stops the crime from being prosecuted - a resulting act of violence. Will we see the law applied to these people who are on camera taking off their unifying identification - black clothes and hats?

The photo posted that says a protester is overcome by smoke after trying to stop the fire is actually of the guy who stood on the car and lit it on fire at Queen West.

I'm pretty sure everything thing these 'anarchists' did shows them in a negative way. What a bunch of heartless, selfish losers. I get, stand up for what you believe, but really....all the people who own those stores and work in those stores...what were you trying to accomplish. You want to be like that, there's lots of countries around the world that are like that all the time. Take it somewhere else....how about some anger management classes.

In a press conference carried on CBC TV this evening Chief Blair said that rubber bullets were not fired. I guess we know conclusively otherwise now!

they guy you said was overcome by smoke putting out a fire? I watched him start the fire and try and set himself on fire probably because he was on drugs, he was arrested and deserved it

I hope this ends soon since I was in the area when the anarchists where rioting

amazing pictures!
also, during a press conference on cp24 the police denied the use of the rubber bullets during protests...but it seems that you guys have proof....

@Andrew
they try to make photographers leave them alone to protect their identity, so then no one can single them out and there's no evidence of that person doing it.

Lets see, the anarchists have broken windows, torched police cars and are there photos of them actually physically attacking anyone? On the other hand, the police seem to be in many photos showing them brutally attacking many people, none of whom are dressed in black. Now, who's being violent!

Thank you all for the awesome photos!

@Andrew: I share you're sentiment. On the other hand, I couldn't care less if any of the anarchists got hurt.

A tweet from Steve Paikin of TVO
"we must make a distinction between the "thugs" who broke store windows and torched cop cars and the very reasonable citizens who just wanted to remind the authorities that the freedom to speak and assemble shouldn't disappear because world leaders come to town."

According to Paikin, it seems the Policeman must stop and ask the protester - are you a thug or peaceful - before they take any action. Paikin would crap his pants in a crowd.

Did he see the Bloc change back into street clothes to mingle into crowd - NO. He was too busy with his pretty boy hair. A two bit ha_ck talking head that people should realize. He thinks he's smart - NOT.

Really great photos. I ran all over the city today to do the same and these are just fantastic.

The "protester overcome by smoke after attempting to put out a fire in a police car" was shown on CP24 / CTV news being arrested and put in the back of a police cruiser. The same guy appears in this photo spread [http://www.blogto.com/city/2010/06/g20_riots/] standing on top of the cruiser before it was lit. Looks like he might have lit the fire, not tried to put it out!

Great pictures! It's very sad to see such a violence in the streets of Toronto. Stay safe!

outraged over burning metal and broken glass? what about human lives? suffering? poverty? exploitation? environmental destruction? violent racism and sexism? illegal wars? occupation?

I have never heard of Black Block protester group, even if it is claimed to be formed in 2009. These black clothes they left, if Police are smart, can be used by Forensic and identify individuals who wore them. I am all in favour of peaceful protest, but violence will never have a place in my right mind. I believe these Black Block group are indeed hippies, druggies, lazy bums who just want to smash and steal. Toronto Gay Pride Organizing Committee better watch out in case these Black Block group shows up at their annual Gay Pride Parade. Those arrested Black Block members should be held 100% accountable, responsible, charged accordingly and pay for the damages done to the property, if they don't pay, well jail time serves them right. We as citizens are powerless to stop them. How about Citizens organize march against violent protest and pull these hoolingas by hair, but alas we're all chikens. I would kick one in the right place where it hurts most.. on the groin.

Violence is unacceptable. I guess those people dressed in black, covering their faces creating havoc need to check into a 12 step program.

Why are there no photos that demonstrate the WHY the protesters were there in the first place? Where are the images about any of the issues that led to this outbreak in violence? This focus on the violence is doing a great disservice to your readers by ignoring the content, issues and grievances of thousands of demonstrators today.

JUST remember these anarchists that are not protesters but criminals causing distruction on our streets. I wish the tough guys of our city would group up and push these these idiots to the police lines to get there justice!

Those rubber bullet guns are also used to deploy tear gas. And I don't see any "bullets"...

"outraged over burning metal and broken glass? what about human lives? suffering? poverty? exploitation? environmental destruction? violent racism and sexism? illegal wars? occupation? "

What's your point? None of this has done anything to improve those. People are deluded to think that this behaviour will have any productive outcome. Worried about human lives, suffering, poverty, exploitation, and envrionmental destruction? Do something useful about it. Breaking things while hiding yourself does nothing for anyone and makes you look a coward whose parents didn't love enough.

The pictures are amazing but I take some umbrage at the pervasive and unqualified use of the term 'anarchist'.

Calling Black Blockers anarchists is kind of like calling all Muslims terrorists or all priest pedophiles; it's untrue, misleading and disingenuous.

Anarchism is the belief that humanity can exist in socially cohesive and cooperative societies without the artificial and arbitrary hierarchical rule of states. Nothing more. Some anarchists believe that violence is a means to the end of destroying the hierarchy that currently exists. Most do not. Painting all anarchists as violent is inaccurate and, considering that journalists should know a little bit about political science, unacceptable and just plain lazy.

I don't support the use of vandalism to make any point. I think that it distracts from the message. I think that mainstream media and politicians love it when it happens though - it sells, both to infotainment consumers and to a vast and morally myopic voting demographic. Personally, I wish that the Block would be abandoned in favor of purely peaceful protest strategies, but so long as it's happening and you're going to talk about it, if you have to label groups and people to sell the story, please try to make sure the labels you're applying are not so misleading. In other words: Be real journalists.

You have the best pics all in one spot. Kudos!

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