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protestors breach security in quebec

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Protest groups breach security at Quebec summit

QUEBEC CITY, April 20 (Reuters) - Protest groups stormed part of the chain link fence ringing Quebec City's Summit of the Americas on Friday in the first sign of serious trouble on the perimeter of the top-level talks, witnesses said.

About 100 protesters, from anarchist and Marxist groups, stormed into the security zone around the conference center where leaders from 34 American countries are to hold three days of talks on trade and democracy.

Police in full riot gear baton-charged the demonstrators, who were wearing black clothes and masks.

Several thousand protesters, complaining that the summit's goal of free trade across the Americas hurts the poor and damages the environment, have converged on the perimeter fence from several directions, forcing police to close some of the gates into the security zone.