Several thousand people demonstrate against Covid restrictions in The Hague
The protest against Covid regulations in The Hague, which was organized by Nederland in Verzet, has ended. Several thousand participants turned up, less than the 25,000 people the organizer projected. Additionally, the truck drivers participating in the Dutch version of the Freedom Convoy also departed from the football stadium of ADO Den Haag, where they camped out since Saturday.
Daniël Gerritsen ruide de boel op om de snelweg af te zetten @POL_DenHaag Jantje heeft ook de volledige video opgeslagen voor de @politie en het @Het_OM pic.twitter.com/LDCe2PPPV1— JantjemetKwak ❗Wappies we zijn klaar met jullie❗ (@IkWakker) February 13, 2022
A police spokesperson could not say where the truck drivers were headed. "Maybe to Brussels, or home. Or to work."
Michel Reijninga organized the Nederland in Verzet protest in The Hague on Sunday. He estimated the number of participants to be between two and three thousand, far lower than what he expected. Still, he said he was satisfied with the turnout.
The demonstration went smoothly, police said. It officially scheduled to run for three hours starting at 1 p.m., but it largely broke up about thirty minutes early.
Some of those present waved Canadian flags in solidarity with the truckers' protest in Canada. There were also people with inverted Dutch flags. Above the stage from which performances and speakers were heard hung a sign with the text “No more Rutte Cabinet!” in capital letters. Protest signs also read “Rutte, fuck off,” also seen during the truck blockade in The Hague on Saturday, and a large banner which stated “less repression, more care.”
Reijinga said that many demonstrators moved from the staging area at the Malieveld to the football stadium. The original route for the protest march was shortened, “so that we could get to the ADO stadium earlier," he said.
The trucks were allowed to be driven off the stadium parking lot just before 4:30 p.m. There were several dozen trucks on the site. Some drivers and their sympathizers accused police of keeping them hostage at the stadium during the overnight period, claiming police blocked the exit at one point.
Initially, when the truckers wanted to join the protest on the Malieveld on Sunday afternoon, they were told they could not drive into the city. The municipality relented, and allowed them to park their vehicles at the Boorlaan, next to the Malieveld, so they could join the demonstration. No trucks were moved to that street, and it is not known how many truckers, if any, participated in that protest march.
Thousand protest vaccine passes and medical tyranny today in The Hague, Netherlands.pic.twitter.com/KzSx2XkEyi— Michael P Senger (@MichaelPSenger) February 13, 2022
Reporting by ANP