Netherlands Covid Curfew Sparks Protests
The Netherlands has experienced the third day of civil unrest over the country’s tough lockdown. The Netherlands has nearly one million confirmed Covid-19 cases since the start of the outbreak, with more than 13,500 deaths.
The government recently introduced a night-time curfew which runs from 9PM to 4:30AM. Anyone caught violating the curfew faces a €95 ($115) fine.
More than 180 people were arrested in 10 Dutch cities as protesters defying a curfew clashed with riot police. Shops in Rotterdam were looted and police used water cannons and tear gas to clear out protesters. Local media also reported trouble in the capital, Amsterdam, the central city of Amersfoort, the southern town of Geleen and elsewhere.
Fires were lit on the streets of The Hague, home to the U.N.’s International Court of Justice, where police on bicycles attempted to move small clusters of men who threw stones and fireworks.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte said the police had the government’s full support, as per BBC. He added that “the riots have nothing to do with protesting or fighting for freedom.” Mayors in several of the cities affected by the violence have vowed to introduce emergency measures in an effort to prevent more disturbances.
This comes a few days after KLM canceled all long haul flights with recent restrictions implemented.