PE Ledger

Saturday, December 4, 2021

Anti-Covid Curb Protests Hit Port City, forcing Dutch police to fire warning shots

After a rally in Rotterdam against the coronavirus limitations and government intentions to restrict unvaccinated people’s admission to specific places, chaos ensued.

Rotterdam: 

After protestors against a partial Covid lockdown set fire to a police car and hurled stones in Rotterdam on Friday, Dutch police fired warning bullets, hurting several individuals.

After a rally in the port city against the coronavirus limitations and government intentions to restrict unvaccinated people’s admission to specific events, chaos ensued.

During the midnight rampage on one of Rotterdam’s main commercial districts, dozens of people were arrested and seven people were hurt in all, including police officers.

Last Saturday, the Netherlands returned to Western Europe’s first partial winter lockdown, with at least three weeks of restrictions on restaurants, shopping, and sports.

The riots were described by Rotterdam mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb as an “orgy of violence.”

“In the end, the cops were compelled to pull a police weapon to defend themselves,” he told reporters.

The protest, which began on Coolsingel Street, police stated in a statement, “There have been riots as a result of this. A number of fires have been started. Police fired several warning rounds and let off fireworks.”

“There have been injuries as a result of the fired rounds,” they said. They did not provide a specific figure, but national broadcaster NOS reported that two persons were injured.

Numerous hundred protesters, according to Dutch media, chanted “freedom” slogans, threw stones at police and firefighters, and set fire to several electric scooters.

‘This is a very serious situation.’

An AFP correspondent claimed the situation had generally calmed down later, but the area was littered with the burning debris of a burned-out police car and hundreds of crushed bicycles.

Riot police with batons and shields were diverting crowds away from the scene. The streets were guarded by officers on horseback and in police vans.

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