Dutch police arrest over 1,500 people at Extinction Rebellion protest in The Hague
Extension Rebellion protesters arrested more than 1,500 people after Dutch police blocked a motorway in The Hague on Saturday.
Dutch police said in a press statement on Saturday that hundreds of police were deployed to “maintain public order” during the climate protests.
Shortly before noon local time, the activists descended on the Utrechatseban (A12) motorway, after riot police prevented them from reaching “the underpass they wanted to block,” according to police.
According to the press release, the activists then began demonstrating in front of the police line, “directly” and “repeatedly” asking the police to leave.
Extension Rebellion Netherlands said police deployed water cannons within 15 minutes of protesters blocking the A12, although according to the group, “there is no question of a dangerous or threatening situation.”
Videos of the protest posted on social media showed protesters dressed in swimsuits and raincoats, ready for water cannons.
Extension Rebellion spokesman Rocky App said in the statement that thousands of people had “protested in front of A12 and with one demand: stop fossil fuel subsidies.”
According to Dutch public broadcaster NOS, Dutch actress Karis van Outen, best known for her role as Melisandre in the hit TV show, “Game of Thrones,” was allegedly hit with a water cannon and arrested by police. done Earlier on Saturday, Van Outen posted a video on his Instagram page of musicians playing Beethoven, calling it a “peaceful and musical protest.”
“Mostly activists, 1,539 people were arrested for violating the Public Demonstrations Act,” the press release said, adding that the Public Prosecution Service would not prosecute because it was only a minor offense under Dutch law. is a crime
According to the press release, 40 people were arrested for other criminal offenses including obstruction, obstruction, vandalism and insult. A man was arrested for resisting arrest, resulting in injuries. According to the police, these cases are still under review.
The arrests in the Netherlands come after German authorities carried out a series of raids this week against comparable climate activist group Last Generation.
A total of 15 properties in seven German states were searched as part of the raids on behalf of the Bavarian State Criminal Police Office (LKA) and the Munich General Public Prosecutor’s Office, officials said.
The prosecutor general’s office in Munich said it had opened a preliminary investigation against a total of seven defendants, aged between 22 and 38, “on charges of forming or supporting a criminal organization” “due to numerous criminal complaints from the population”. .
On Germany’s far right, political figures were approving of the authorities’ action on the climate bloc.
Friedrich Merz, the leader of the center-right Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party, wrote on Twitter that “Mass damage to property, graffiti or memorial plaques, or sticking oneself to streets or cars is a fairly simple crime. .”
He added, “It is right that the police and prosecutors are taking action against the last generation and those who finance it.”
Some, however, questioned the move. Die Linke (left) MP Lorenz Gosta Butin told Bavarian broadcaster Bayerischer Rundfunk that prosecutors are “putting themselves above our judiciary and the courts.”
Helge Limburg, a member of parliament for Germany’s Green Party, agreed in an interview with Redaktionsnetzwerk Deutschland (RND) that the “blanket perception” of the group as criminals was legally questionable.
In 2020 the UK threatened to class extension insurgency as an organized crime group, with activists facing up to five years in prison, although the plans did not materialise.