NEWS

Montreal student protest mascot Anarchopanda gets head back

04/11/2013 08:17 EDT | Updated 06/11/2013 05:12 EDT
The panda that became the mascot of last year's Quebec student protests has been reunited with its head.

Montreal police seized the head of the panda costume last Friday during a downtown protest against a controversial municipal bylaw.

Anarchopanda, as he has come to be known, was a fixture near the front lines of demonstrations last spring as students in Quebec protested tuition fee increases.

The man wearing the panda costume — a philosophy teacher at a Montreal college — was fined along with 278 other people for participating in the illegal protest Friday.

A city bylaw, the very one that protesters were demonstrating against, prohibits the wearing of masks during street demonstrations. Police seized Anarchopanda's head under that provision.

Police said the head was considered evidence and could be used in court.

The mascot confirmed on his Facebook page that the head had been returned Wednesday morning, posting a picture of himself giving a thumbs-up with a beer in hand and the head in place.

He stressed that the attention raised by the temporary confiscation of a key piece of Anarchopanda's getup actually shed more light on the fight against the municipal bylaw, which sets out the rules of a legal demonstration.

He also mockingly thanked the Montreal police for helping him raise awareness of the cause.

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