Massive numbers of Dutch protesters gathered in Amsterdam on Sunday to protest dranconian covid lockdowns and vaccination measures.
The Netherlands went into a sudden lockdown on 19 December when the government ordered the closure of all but essential stores, as well as restaurants, hairdressers, gyms, museums and other public places until at least 14 January
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Under the restrictions, public gatherings of more than two people are also currently prohibited
Sundays ‘unauthorised’ protest, descended into violence when police in riot gear arrived to disperse the demonstrators.
Video footage shows riot police thrashing protesters with batons and one man being mauled by a police dog.
Mail Online reports: The demonstration came on the same day Dutch police said they would take action to protest the increasing demands of their work, but union representatives said riot police would continue to work if necessary.
Coronavirus infection rates have been gradually decreasing for weeks in the Netherlands, which re-introduced lockdown measures in November and tightened them further during the holiday season.
The 7-day rolling average of new daily cases edged slightly lower over the past week to 85.55 new cases per 100,000 people even as the omicron mutation became the nation’s dominant variant.
Under the lockdown, all non-essential shops are closed along with bars, restaurants and venues such as museums, theatres and cinemas.
Some people could also be seen being hit with batons as authorities tried to break up the march.
Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema issued an emergency ordinance, empowering police to clear the central Museum Square.
As crowds marched, they played music and holding yellow umbrellas in a sign of opposition to the government measures before being pushed away from the square as riot police marched across the grass to clear the area, sending the demonstrators into nearby streets after the municipality later issued an emergency order for people to leave.
There was a heavy police presence in the square and nearby streets as the municipality designated the area as a security risk region, giving police the authority to search people preventatively.
Before officers moved in, some protesters unfurled a banner that said ‘Less repression, more care’ near the Van Gogh Museum.
A group of people in white overalls and masks held up signs, including one that read on one side: ‘It’s not about a virus, it’s about control’ and on the other ‘Freedom’.
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