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Anti-curfew protests lead to more arrests, tickets in Montreal and Quebec City

A third protest in as many nights against the 8 p.m. curfew in Montreal prompted another wave of arrests and tickets in the downtown core.

Montreal police spokesperson Jean-Pierre Brabant says three people were arrested Tuesday night for obstructing the work of police officers. A total of 86 tickets were handed out during the protest.

“No one was injured in the event,” he said.

READ MORE: Quebec premier tells young people to ‘respect the rules’ 

The demonstration comes after the Quebec government rolled back curfew to 8 p.m. for Montreal and Laval in a bid to stop the spread of COVID-19.

The health order has been in effect since January, when the province was grappling with the height of the pandemic’s second wave, though it was pushed back to 9:30 p.m. for a few weeks in late March.

Quebec is the only province to implement a curfew as part of restrictions during the health crisis. Premier François Legault said on Tuesday he understands the frustration, but maintains that the rule is designed to protect people from coronavirus variants, which are quickly gaining traction.

READ MORE: Quebec reports almost 1,500 new COVID-19 cases as hospitalizations continue to climb

The measure has sparked protests in Montreal, but demonstrators also took to the streets Tuesday night in Quebec City, which has been hard hit by the third wave.

The curfew is also temporarily set at 8 p.m. in the provincial capital as part of emergency measures in the area. Schools and non-essential businesses remain closed until April 25 due to a high number of infections.

The protest drew a small crowd outside the province’s public security ministry offices on Laurier Boulevard. Quebec City police say they arrested eight people and issued 12 tickets for non-compliance with the curfew.

Click to play video: COVID-19 fatigue and frustration rise across Canada as pandemic drags on

— With files from The Canadian Press

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