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Police arrest protesting cyclists along the streets of downtown Toronto during the G20 Summit on Sunday, June 27, 2010. (Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press/Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press)
Police arrest protesting cyclists along the streets of downtown Toronto during the G20 Summit on Sunday, June 27, 2010. (Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press/Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press)

Toronto Police to review G20 response Add to ...

Facing criticism over G20 tactics, the Toronto Police Service will review "all aspects" of summit policing, Chief Bill Blair announced on Tuesday.

The review, which will be conducted by the force's Summit Management After Action Review Team, will provide an "assessment of the strengths and weaknesses in the G20 plans, and their execution," the force said in a news release.

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"We feel it's extremely important, with an event of this unprecedented size and complexity, to ensure that we examine everything we did and how we did it. This will ensure that our procedures are tested thoroughly, and that we identify any areas that may require further examination," Chief Blair said in the statement.

Following a series of violent skirmishes and a record number of arrests, more than 1,000 people marched through the streets of downtown Toronto on Monday evening to protest police methods during the weekend summit.

The police have defended their actions, saying the show of force was necessary after militant demonstrators vandalized businesses and torched cruisers on Saturday afternoon.

"We had always intended to facilitate lawful, peaceful protest. When a large group - hundreds - engaged in criminality, our response had to change in response to their criminal behaviour," Chief Blair told The Globe and Mail on Monday.

Chief Blair's review announcement comes as several groups demand inquiries into summit security measures.

Amnesty International Canada is calling on the federal and Ontario governments to launch an independent review of security tactics.

The Canadian Civil Liberties Association is to release a report on G20 policing later Tuesday outlining what it says are serious breaches of civil rights. The organization has also denounced the high tally of detentions; more than 900 people were arrested during the weekend, the largest mass arrests in Canadian history. Most people were released without charge.

In addition, a Facebook group is calling for a public inquiry into the G20, with dozens of comments critical of police actions. The group had more than 11,000 members by Tuesday morning.

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