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At least 40,000 rally in favor of CHOI


QUEBEC CITY - A crowd estimated by police at between 40,000 and 50,000 people held a rally in this provincial capital yesterday in support of their favorite radio station, CHOI-FM.

Chanting "Liberté, Liberté" (freedom, freedom), the crowd took to the streets of Quebec to protest the CRTC decision to take away CHOI's license.

Thanks to many complaints over offensive content and CHOI's refusal through the years to modify that content despite warnings and regulatory sanctions, the CRTC told Genex Communications last week that it would not renew the license when it expires at the end of August.

It also called for new applications to fill the void to be left in the market.

Genex owner Patrice Demers, however, has vowed to fight the decision in the courts and on the air - and given the support he apparently has in the community, this is an issue that the country's politicians (especially the Liberals, who were obliterated in the province, especially the Quebec City area, where former Heritage Minister Hélène Scherrer was from) will not be able to ignore.

Click here to see some aerial shots of the rally.

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