Zwarte Piet protests at Sinterklaas arrival banned over fireworks: mayor

A last-minute demonstration ban implemented for the national Sinterklaas arrival in Dokkum this past Saturday had to do with information that protesters planned to use heavy fireworks, Mayor Marga Waanders of Dongeradeel - which covers Dokkum - said in a statement. The statement did not say whether it was pro-Zwarte Piet or anti-Zwarte Piet protesters who had fireworks, AD reports. 

"Based on this information, the triangle [police, Prosecutor and mayor] was advised to ban the demonstration, because the safety of all people could no longer be guaranteed", Waanders said. 

Protest group Kick Out Zwarte Piet had permission to demonstrate against racism at the Sinterklaas parade in Dokkum. A group of Zwarte Piet supporters blocked their route to Dokkum by physically blocking the A7 highway. When the group finally reached the Friesland town, their demonstration could not go through.

None of the people who blocked the highway were arrested, though the police did take down their names and license plates. A fundraising action was launched to pay for any fines the police may impose on these people.