Thousands of Montrealers wove their way through downtown Montreal on a hot Sunday afternoon in a sombre three-kilometre march from Westmount Park, along Ste-Catherine St. to Place des Arts to mark the 100th anniversary of the Armenian genocide, the Montreal Gazette reports.
Held in honour of the estimated 1.5 million people who died, the commemorative walk followed similar marches held in Toronto and Ottawa.
Organizers estimated 10,000 people took part were accompanied by a drum band as they marched in relative silence.
The march commemorated Armenians, as well as Rwandans, Jews and other victims of genocide, and called for an end to genocide worldwide.
However, most of those taking part were from Montreal’s Armenian community, hundreds of them wearing black T-shirts with the message “I remember and demand.”
Among those who attended were Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre, Federal Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau, and many other MNAs and city councillors. Among them was Harout Chitilian, vice-president of the city’s executive committee, and a descendant of Armenian genocide survivors.
When they arrived in Place des Festivals, many marchers laid flowers in front of a replica of Dzidzernagapert, a monument to the genocide in the city of Yerevan.
The marchers filled the Place des Festivals, listened to several speeches and watched a broadcast of a commemoration held in Place des Arts.