Protests against the corona measures broke out in around ten Dutch cities on Sunday.
Protests in the Netherlands against the night curfew to contain the corona pandemic have led to violent clashes between demonstrators and the police in several cities. The re were riots in around ten cities on Sunday. More than 130 people were arrested, according to the authorities and the Dutch media.
According to the public broadcaster NOS, the police used dogs and a water cannon in a square in the center of Amsterdam to break up a protest meeting of around 1,500 people. At least a hundred people were arrested in the city, the city administration announced. According to the local broadcaster AT5, police officers cordoned off Mayor Femke Halsema’s residence.
In Eindhoven, the police dispersed hundreds of demonstrators with tear gas, as reported by the regional broadcaster Omroep Brabant. Several vehicles were set on fire there and shops at the main train station were looted. At least 30 people were arrested in the city, according to police.
“We are moving towards a civil war”
The Mayor of Eindhoven, John Jorritsma, spoke in drastic terms about the escalation of the protests. If the situation continues to develop like this, “we are heading for civil war,” he told journalists.
The re were also riots in Apeldoorn, Arnhem, Breda, The Hague, Enschede, Roermond, Tilburg and Venlo. On Saturday evening, a corona test center in the northern village of Urk was set on fire, as Health Minister Hugo de Jonge announced.
The exit ban between 9:00 p.m. and 4:30 a.m. came into force on Saturday. Violations are punished with a fine of 95 euros. It is the first curfew in the EU country since World War II. It will initially remain in force until February 9 and help contain the particularly contagious variant of the coronavirus, which was first discovered in England.
In mid-January, the government in The Hague had already extended the lockdown to February 9. Schools, restaurants and all unnecessary shops are closed. In addition, no more than one guest may be in a household.
Arrests in Denmark
In Denmark, three men were arrested over the weekend who are held responsible for burning a doll with reference to Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen during protests against the corona restrictions. According to the police, suspects between the ages of 30 and 34 are charged with an “attack on the government” and threats of violence.
According to pictures spread by the Danish media, the doll was hung on a lamppost in Copenhagen on Saturday. A photo of Frederiksen was stuck on her face, and there was also a slip of paper that said, “She must be killed”. The doll was then burned. The incident sparked great outrage in Denmark.
Several hundred people demonstrated against the current lockdown measures in Copenhagen on Saturday evening. The y shouted “Freedom for Denmark, we have enough!” Despite the angry chants, the demonstration was mostly peaceful. Only after the police broke up the gathering did the violence begin. Bottles were thrown at police officers.