Bare with US protest
Three sisters hold rally "to support women's right to be topless in public, and also to show support for desexualizing women's breasts"REUTERS/Alexandros Avramidis/Representational Image

Hundreds of women and men went topless in Waterloo, Ontario, in support of three sisters who were asked to cover up by the Canadian police after they were spotted riding bicycles without shirts last week.

The three sisters, identified as Tameera, Nadia and Alysha Mohamed organised the protest rally called Bare With Us, on Saturday, 1 August, in which people marched through the town holding banners in support of women's right to go topless.

Media reports claimed that the protesters adorned body paint and waved banners with messages such as "They are boobs -- not bombs, chill out..." Some carried banners that read, "Everyone has the right to NOT be harassed" and "Bare With Us! They're just boobs!"

Last week, a Canadian police officer stopped the women and asked them to put on their tops, when he spotted them shirtless.

Later, the officer said he had "stopped them to make sure their bicycles were appropriately outfitted with bells and lights".

Tameera, Nadia and Alysha claimed they were approached by the police in Kitchener, when they had "removed their shirts to cool off during a bike ride".

Enraged by the attitude of the officer, the sisters thought of holding the march and invited people on Facebook to join them in the rally called "Bare with Us: Top Freedom Rally", which resulted in the massive turnout.

They asked people "to support women's right to be topless in public, and also to show support for desexualizing women's breasts".

"Women are still not truly free to be topless in public, without facing harassment from passers by and in some cases, uninformed police officers," the women wrote on their Facebook page.

It is not illegal for women to remain topless in public places in Ontario, as a legislation was passed in 1996, that gave them the right to do so.