‘Orgy of violence’: Dutch police open fire on rioters

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Police opened fire on protesters in rioting that erupted in downtown Rotterdam around a demonstration against COVID-19 restrictions late Friday night. The Dutch city’s mayor called it “an orgy of violence.”

Police said that two rioters were hospitalized after being hit by bullets and investigations were underway to establish if they were shot by police. The condition of the injured rioters was not disclosed.

Officers arrested 51 people, about half of them minors, police said Saturday afternoon. One police officer was hospitalized with a leg injury sustained in the rioting, another was treated by ambulance staff and “countless” others suffered minor injuries.

Protesters are seen during demonstrations against coronavirus disease (COVID-19) measures which turned violent in Rotterdam, Netherlands on Friday in this still image obtained from video provided on social media. (REUTERS) 

Photos from the scene showed at least one police car in flames and another with a bicycle slammed through its windshield.

Riot police and a water cannon restored calm after midnight.

It was one of the worst outbreaks of violence in the Netherlands since coronavirus restrictions were first imposed last year. In January, rioters also attacked police and set fires on the streets of Rotterdam after a curfew came into force.




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