At least 93 police officers were injured and 354 protesters were detained after traditional May Day rallies in Berlin, Germany turned violent, the city’s top security official said Sunday. More than 350 people were reportedly arrested in Berlin after demonstrators clashed with police.
More than 20 different rallies took place in the German capital on Saturday and the vast majority of them were peaceful. Approximately 30,000 protesters gathered in the city on Saturday, Reuters reported. However, a leftist march of 8,000 people through the city’s Neukoelln and Kreuzberg neighborhood, which has seen clashes in past decades, turned violent. Protesters lit cars and trash cans on fire before police in riot gear responded with pepper spray and water cannons and also threw bottles and rocks at officers, and burned garbage cans and wooden pallets in the streets. Police reportedly cited physical assaults and trespassing as the reason for the arrests. Thousands of people also gathered for several protests throughout the country including in Leipzig and Hamburg. There’s a nightly curfew in most parts of Germany because of the high number of coronavirus infections, but political protests and religious gatherings are exempt from the curfew. Officials said at least 93 officers were injured as a result of the confrontations in the capital city.