Amsterdam BLM protest moved to bigger location as thousands show interest
A protest against racist police brutality scheduled in Amsterdam on Wednesday at 5 p.m. has been moved from the Anton de Komplein in the Bijlmer neighborhood to the bigger Nelson Mandela Park. On the Facebook event alone, some 1,900 people indicated that they will be attending the demonstration and another 3,800 said they are interested in attending - much more than the Anton de Komplein can accommodate while adhering to social distancing measures.
"The black community in the Bijlmer has been a victim of oppression for decades. Racism and police violence have been the subject of frequent attention in the Bijlmer since the 1990s," organizers said in a statement. The two sites are separated by about 500 meters with the local police station right in the middle.
"By now, we are all aware of the ongoing police brutality against black people in the US. Police brutality against black people is also a daily occurrence in the Netherlands," the organizers said. "The Dutch police are structurally guilty of ethnic profiling, institutional racism and racist violence."
A spokesperson for the organizers of the protest confirmed to AT5 that they opted for a bigger location, to prevent a similar situation to the Black Lives Matter protest on Dam Square last week. So many people showed up to that protest that social distancing was impossible. Some estimates suggest that as many as 14 thousand attended the June 1 demonstration, with police on the scene that day having told NL Times that the square seemed like it was 50 percent over its normal capacity.
Organizers again repeated their request that all participants in Wednesday's demonstration to keep 1.5 meters apart and wear af face mask. They said people have to stay home if they have symptoms of any kind.