Days of talks between students and the Quebec government to resolve three months of protests over tuition fee hikes continued, ending hopes of a quick settlement.
Talks had appeared to be moving forward earlier in the week but a student leader, Martine Desjardins, said late Wednesday during a break in negotiations she was "disappointed" the government had not responded to counter proposals she and colleagues submitted against government efforts to raise fees.
Since February, hundreds of protesters have been arrested and clashes have erupted sporadically as more than 165,000 students refused to attend class and tens of thousands have protested the planned increase in school fees.
A tentative deal was reached after marathon talks a month ago but soon fell apart, and nightly protests in Montreal and other cities resumed.
Last week some 1,000 protesters were detained in some of the biggest mass arrests in the province's history.
This week of talks between Education Minister Michelle Courchesne and student leaders have been touted as a "last chance" to resolve the conflict before the start of summer festivals and other major tourist draws.
Courchesne was expected to put a new offer on the table, but will not likely budge on the start in September of the staggered increases in tuition fees at the province's universities.© ANP/AFP