Seven people were detained in Austria’s capital, Vienna, after opponents of strict Covid-19 restrictions broke through police barriers and clashed with the officers. It is expected that vaccination will be compulsory for all citizens in February.
On Saturday, more than 2,000 people joined a protest in Vienna. They sang “Freedom”They marched with signs that stated, “People are locking up people, not the virus.”
Some protesters evaded police barricades using detours. Other groups managed to break through the bars. Police officers were caught using metal barriers to force people out of the streets. Police dispersed between 150-200 protestors at one time and confiscated flags, drums and loudspeakers.
Seven people were arrested, Austrian media reported, citing police. Mehr than 100 more charges were added for violations of the law regarding public assembly. One officer suffered minor injuries.
Similar rallies were also held in Innsbruck (Klagenfurt), Leibnitz and Innsbruck. Austria released its last lockdown, which was only applicable to vaccinated residents. The general mandate to get vaccinated nationwide will take effect on February 1, 2022.
The government extended the lockdown for unvaccinated people for another 10 days on Friday, but agreed to temporarily ease some restrictions on private gatherings during Christmas and New Year’s Eve.