Dozens detained amid protests over anti-Covid restrictions in Brussels (VIDEOS)
Thousands of people took to the streets of Brussels to protest against enduring Covid-19 restrictions. The march ultimately decended into clashes with police, and some 55 people were detained.
Some 3,500 people marched through the streets of the Belgian capital, according to police estimates. The rally’s organizers, however, gave a significantly bigger tally, claiming that up to 50,000 took part in the event.
The protests in Brussels have already continued for several consecutive weekends, with all the previous events marred by street violence. Sunday's march was accompanied by a large police force.
🇧🇪 Brussels against covid tyranny today pic.twitter.com/HIJNwWVpe0— Anonymous UK Citizen (@AnonUKCitizen) December 19, 2021
The protesters condemned the enduring anti-coronavirus restrictions and policies like the rollout of a Covid-19 health pass – something they see as an “obligation” to get vaccinated. The marchers were seen carrying assorted placards, reading “I’ve had my fair dose,” “Enough is enough,” and “Do not touch our children.”
While the march was largely peaceful, a group of rowdy protesters ultimately engaged in scuffles with police, pelting law enforcement with bottles, pavement stones, and other objects.
🔥🔴🇧🇪 -La manifestation contre le pass sanitaire dégénère à Bruxelles. De nombreux affrontements ont eu lieu entre la police et les manifestants. La police a fait usage de gaz lacrymogènes et de canons à eau. pic.twitter.com/v48U7SADEJ— Joëlle B. (@Jolle67632617) December 19, 2021
The police responded with tear gas, and charged the crowd, beating protesters with batons, footage from the scene shows.
Some 48 people ended up under administrative arrest after the clashes, with a further seven under judicial arrest. At least one of the protesters was injured during the clashes, and required hospitalization.
“There were also five reports of material damage,” a police spokesperson said, as quoted by local media.