Quebec education minister calls for truce with striking students over demonstrations

April 24, 2012

Quebec Education Minister Line Beauchamp said Monday that she has agreed to meet with student groups, as long as they agreed to a 48-hour truce to the social unrest that has recently spurred violent clashes with police. "I am also asking for it (the truce) in the name of the people who are growing weary with the acts of disruption and who want us to give a chance for discussions," the minister said. "I can’t stop the students from raising the question of tuition fees...the idea here is not to close the door, the idea is to keep it open." Beauchamp also extended the invitation to the Coalition large de l'Association pour une solidarité syndicale étudiante (CLASSE), which had refused to condemn violent confrontations as demanded by the minister. CLASSE has agreed to condemn certain violent acts, but it still supports civil disobedience. Talks began yesterday afternoon, and students said they were willing to take whatever time was needed to come to an agreement, even if it meant extending the truce. Quebec News Release (in French) | Globe and Mail | Montreal Gazette