Angry passengers afraid to miss flight cause "threatening situation" at Schiphol
The Koninklijke Marechaussee intervened at Schiphol on Sunday evening due to a "threatening situation" at security caused by travelers who threatened to miss their flight. Spokespersons for Schiphol and the Marechaussee, a policing force that works as part of the Dutch military and is responsible for airport security, confirmed this on Monday after reports from De Telegraaf and NRC.
On Sunday evening, some security guards walked away from the security check due to a staff change. This caused a "fierce" reaction from waiting travelers, after which the security personnel felt unsafe. They closed the shutter and called the Marechaussee because of a "threatening situation," a spokesperson said.
The Marechaussee "de-escalated" the situation, and it returned to "normal," the spokesperson said. Insiders told NRC and the Telegraaf that there was a fight, but the spokesperson would not comment on that. "Our colleagues ensured that calm returned and no one was arrested."
"We understand that travelers want to travel and want to catch their flight. Together with our partners, we are doing everything we can to make that possible. We call on everyone to let our colleagues do their work safely," said a spokesperson for Schiphol.
Staff shortages have caused crowds at Schiphol in recent weeks. There were also long queues on Monday, but no significant incidents. Some people did become unwell due to the long wait. "This concerns people who had to stand on their feet for a long time and then passed out," said the Marechaussee. Schiphol called the "very long" queues annoying.
Reporting by ANP