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Demonstration over Israel-Hamas conflict shuts down roads in downtown Toronto

Protestors held Palestinian flags at a downtown Toronto event on Oct. 17, 2023. Global News

Portions of roads in the downtown Toronto area were closed for a big demonstration Tuesday night as local communities continue to react to conflict in the Middle East.

Around 8 p.m. Tuesday, Toronto police said a portion of Yonge Street was closed between Bloor and Charles streets for a “large demonstration.”

Shortly after, police said Bloor Street was also closed in part, including at Bay and Church streets.

However, by just before 11 p.m., police said the roads had reopened.

On Tuesday, a group called the Palestinian Youth Movement announced an event called Emergency Action For Gaza outside the Israeli Consulate in the area of Yonge and Bloor streets.

Images near the protest showed dozens of Toronto police officers dressed in riot gear on standby.

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Toronto police’s public order officers on standby on Oct. 17, 2023. Global News

The demonstration is the latest in a string of vigils and protests held by both the Israeli and Palestinian communities in the aftermath of renewed tensions in the Middle East.

Hostilities between Hamas, categorized as a terrorist group by the Canadian government, and Israel flared up after Hamas launched a brutal attack on Israel at the start of October.

The attack left more than 1,000 Israelis dead. Thousands of Palestinians were also killed in Israeli air strikes on the Gaza Strip after the attack.

Click to play video: 'Hundreds of pro-Palestinian demonstrators protest in front of Justin Trudeau’s Montreal office'
Hundreds of pro-Palestinian demonstrators protest in front of Justin Trudeau’s Montreal office

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