AP

Anti-lockdown protesters march through Dutch city of Utrecht

Dec 4, 2021, 9:18 AM | Updated: 9:53 am

UTRECHT, Netherlands (AP) — Thousands of people marched peacefully through the Dutch city of Utrecht on Saturday to protest the government’s coronavirus lockdown measures.

Holding balloons, umbrellas and banners, including ones that said: “It’s not right,” protesters watched by a large police presence moved from a park into the city center without incident.

Siebke Koopman said he was demonstrating against more than just the Dutch government’s COVID-19 restrictions.

“The privatization of the health care and education, the involvement in the international conflicts that are nothing to do with the Netherlands, I think we must have more decision rights in those things,” he said. “I think that demonstrating is the only way to show our sentiment peacefully.”

The Dutch government imposed a partial lockdown three weeks ago and tightened it more a week ago as COVID-19 infections remained the highest they have been since the start of the pandemic. Among the measures, all bars, restaurants and other public venues including stores selling nonessential goods have to close at 5 p.m.

Dutch infection rates this week began to ease slightly but remain close to record highs.

A demonstration in the port city of Rotterdam shortly after the partial lockdown was announced last month degenerated into street violence so intense that police officers opened fire on rioters.

Meanwhile, the Dutch public health institute said Saturday that 18 passengers who flew back to the Netherlands from South Africa just over a week ago tested positive for the omicron variant. The institute previously had said 14 tested positive for the new mutation.

More than 600 passengers arrived from South Africa on Nov. 26, the day the Dutch government imposed a ban on flights from southern Africa amid concerns about omicron.

Travelers who had the new variant had either mild symptoms or no symptoms.

____

Associated Press writer Mike Corder contributed from The Hague.

__

Follow all of AP’s pandemic coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

A newly released report on last year’s fatal crash involving a pickup truck and a group of bicycl...

Associated Press

Report suggests steering of vehicle that caused fatal Goodyear bicycle crash worked fine

A new report on last year’s fatal Goodyear bicycle crash has cast doubts about the driver’s claim the vehicle’s steering locked up.

3 hours ago

Israeli Embassy...

Associated Press

US airman dies after setting himself ablaze outside Israeli Embassy in Israel-Hamas war protest

An active-duty member of the U.S. Air Force has died after he set himself ablaze outside the Israeli Embassy in Washington, D.C.

2 days ago

Biden and Trump to visit Mexico border Thursday immigration...

Associated Press

Biden and Trump both plan trips to the Mexico border Thursday, dueling for advantage on immigration

President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump will make dueling trips to the U.S-Mexico border on Thursday.

2 days ago

Arizona and New York attorneys feud over extraditing suspect...

Associated Press

Why Alvin Bragg and Rachel Mitchell are fighting over extraditing suspect in New York hotel killing

Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell says she isn't into extraditing a suspect due to her lack of faith in Manhattan’s top prosecutor.

6 days ago

A Gila monster is displayed at the Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle, Dec. 14, 2018. A 34-year-old Color...

Associated Press

Colorado man dies after being bitten by pet Gila monster

A Colorado man has died after being bitten by his pet Gila monster in what would be a rare death by one of the desert lizards if the creature's venom turns out to have been the cause.

7 days ago

Police clear the area following a shooting at the Kansas City Chiefs NFL football Super Bowl celebr...

Associated Press

1 dead, many wounded after shooting at Kansas City Chiefs’ Super Bowl victory parade

One person died after 22 people were hit by gunfire in a shooting at the end of the Kansas Chiefs' Super Bowl victory celebration Wednesday.

14 days ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinics: transforming health care in the valley

Midwestern University, long a fixture of comprehensive health care education in the West Valley, is also a recognized leader in community health care.

...

DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.

...

Canvas Annuity

Interest rates may have peaked. Should you buy a CD, high-yield savings account, or a fixed annuity?

Interest rates are the highest they’ve been in decades, and it looks like the Fed has paused hikes. This may be the best time to lock in rates for long-term, low-risk financial products like fixed annuities.

Anti-lockdown protesters march through Dutch city of Utrecht