Amsterdam, Netherlands) – Corona demo despite ban on assembly! Around 2000 critics of the measures gathered in Amsterdam on Sunday and protested at the Rijksmuseum in the center of the Dutch capital.
There were also violent clashes with a smaller group of demonstrators. Mayor Femke Halsema (55) ordered the evacuation of the area. At least one person was arrested.
The police had evidence in advance that the participants might be prepared to use violence – therefore special forces were deployed to break up the demo and disperse the crowd.
With loudspeakers, the emergency services asked the participants to leave the museum square – and most of them followed the call. However, some then moved on through the city center to the nearby Vondelpark.
The riot police were in action with several hundred officers, water cannons were ready. After similar unauthorized get-togethers, which the organizers refer to as “having coffee together”, riots had broken out in the past.
Due to the rapid spread of the highly contagious Omicron variant, the Netherlands is in a tough lockdown: It began in November and is expected to last until at least mid-January. Shops (except relevant ones such as supermarkets) are closed, as are bars, restaurants, museums and cinemas.
However, the number of infections in the Netherlands (17.1 million inhabitants) has fallen steadily in recent weeks: the 7-day incidence is currently 85.5 per 100,000 inhabitants. Omikron is the predominant variant.