Kurdish, Turkey supporters clash at Utrecht station; Police respond


A protest at Utrecht Centraal on Wednesday evening turned into a confrontation between Kurdish people protesting against Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan and counter-protesters. The police intervened and dispersed the protesters, NU.nl reports.

A group of around 70 protesters gathered in the station hall to protest against Turkey invading Syria two weeks ago to expel Kurds from a safe 'no-go zone'. The protesters carried banners and shouted slogans like "Erdogan murderer!", according to the newspaper. Some 40 counter protesters arrived and the atmosphere quickly turned grim.

Police officers immediately intervened when the confrontation threatened to turn physical, a spokesperson for the police said to NU.nl. Police dogs and officers on horses were used to separate the two groups. The police also ordered the station's door on the Jaarbeurs side to remain closed for some time, to keep the protesters outside. 

The demonstrators were taken to more quiet locations in the city. No one was injured. One person was arrested for refusing to identify himself. 

The police were only informed about the demonstration at the last minute. According to RTV Utrecht, the municipality was also unaware of the protest. At least the counter-demonstrators did not register their protest.