Global Unrest Builds as Anti-Lockdown Protests Erupt in Germany, France, Canada
Angry protesters gather calling for an end to economy-killing shutdown measures
As global unrest continues to build amid the economy-killing coronavirus pandemic, protests have erupted around the world as angry citizens call for an end to lockdown measures.
Aside from the ongoing protests in the U.S., fresh demonstrations popped up in Canada, France, and Germany over the weekend.
Anger over virus control measures has spread worldwide as individuals tire of the measures put in place to “flatten the curve” of the impact from COVID-19.
Last week, dozens of people began descending on Queen’s Park in Toronto, Ontario.
The Canadian protesters are calling “for an end to the shutdown of many services, businesses, activities and public spaces across the province amid the pandemic,” according to CBC, Canada’s state-run media.
The mostly-peaceful demonstration was blasted by local officials, including Ontario Premier Doug Ford, who slammed the protesters as “selfish,” branding them “a bunch of yahoos.”
Demonstrators claims, though, were similar to those raised by American anti-lockdown protesters, who have appeared in a number of state capitals over the past several weeks.
The protests are pushing back against virus control measures that are killing small businesses and prompting skyrocketing unemployment.
“Health and economics are not mutually exclusive,” the Toronto protest organizers told the CBC in an email.
"We are fighting for small business, the working class, the poor, students, victims of domestic abuse, people waiting for elective medical procedures, the right to peaceful assembly, the list is endless.
"We choose freedom, liberty, and the balance of mental and physical health."
In Europe, the protests have gotten violent, according to The Daily Wire.
Riots began taking over Italy months ago, particularly in the economically disadvantaged south, over coronavirus-related lockdowns, but they’ve now spread to France and Germany, where lockdown measures are still in effect.
Paris, France, is in the midst of four days of violent unrest after police attempted to stop and punish a motorcyclist who broke lockdown rules.
"Stringent restrictions on public movement ordered by President Emmanuel Macron to tackle the epidemic have exacerbated deep-seated social tensions in deprived, low-income neighborhoods that ring the capital,” the CBC reports.
“Violence first flared on Saturday after the [motorcycle] rider hurtled into the open door of an unmarked police car and required surgery to his leg.
"Some local residents alleged that officers deliberately opened the door into his path, and police have said an investigation is underway.”
Youths in the Paris suburbs have launched fireworks at police and torched cars, even as French authorities urged peace and calm — and stressed the importance of lockdown measures, particularly in Paris’ poorer suburbs, where the virus has killed hundreds.
In Germany, where anti-virus efforts have produced some of the lowest death rates in the world, patience is also nearing an end among German workers, who say the anti-virus lockdowns have stolen their lives and livelihoods.
VIDEO: Thousands take to the streets of #Berlin 🇩🇪 to protest against lockdown. pic.twitter.com/Us3XMTl6WP #lockdown #Merkel #ConfinementJour40 #BorisJohnson #BeijingBoris #Huawei #Macron #RishiSunak #China #ChinaVirus #COVID19 #pritiawful #NHS— Sam Pye (@freddie1999) April 25, 2020
“German police wearing riot gear and face masks tussled on Saturday, April 25, with dozens of protesters demonstrating in central Berlin against the coronavirus lockdown on public life,” Straits Times reported Saturday adding that at least 100 protesters were eventually arrested.
“We are here today … to stand up for our opinion,” one protester told media.
"For the protection of constitutional rights, freedom, and above all freedom of speech."
In the middle of Berlin another Saturday protest is underway against the lockdown measures introduced - and slowly being lifted - by the Germany government. #COVID19— alex_jmatthews (@alex_jmatthews) April 25, 2020
One of the protestors was just carried away by police officers pic.twitter.com/3zSfutVfZf
Express says more than a thousand protesters showed up to demonstrate against the lockdown in Berlin — so many that Berlin city government passed an emergency measure banning gatherings of more than 20 people.
German prime minister Angela Merkel said earlier this week that, like other European countries, Germany is in it for the “long haul” and residents should not expect social distancing measures to be lifted “anytime soon.”