Riot police cancels strike, prepares to intervene at Museumplein
Members of the riot police were prepared to intervene at an anti-coronavirus measures protest on the Museumplein, chair of the police union ACP Gerrit van de Kamp said. A strike that was planned for Sunday was canceled around 11 a.m. as officers prepared for anti-coronavirus measures protest on the Museumplein at noon. Amsterdam's local leadership, including the mayor, and the heads of the local districts of the police and Public Prosecution Service had canceled the protest earlier due to fears of violent outbreaks.
Hundreds of protesters already gathered at the Museumplein at the start of the demonstration. Within an hour, there were several thousand people at the Museumplein. The Marcheausee prepared to assist the riot squad. Amsterdam police also arranged water canons in case protests got out of hand.
"We spoke with about 100 to 200 colleagues and the willingness to take action was great," Van de Kamp said. "Now the colleagues are going to prepare for the demonstration, but in our next strike, we will only take to the streets if the public order is at stake."
According to the ACP chair, many colleagues only wanted to intervene when it was essential. Police unions want to draw attention to, among other grieves, the high workload, cutback and violence against police officers.
The police unions wanted to organize a more significant strike, but that was cut short due to an anti-coronavirus protest on the Museumplein. Last year, anti-coronavirus measures protests on the Museumplein turned into riots.
Police closed off several streets around the Museumplein and public transport had to be diverted.
Reporting by ANP and NL Times.