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Geen Jorwert zonder Brussel 12

Brussels burns as more than 100,000 protesters clash with police during march against EU austerity measures 

  • Fighting broke out after the end of largely peaceful trade union march
  • New right-wing government was elected in Belgium last month 
  • It wants to raise retirement age, cancel wage rises and cut welfare benefits
Violence broke out on the streets of Brussels today as more than 100,000 people marched against EU-enforced austerity.
Water cannons and tear gas were used in the centre of the Belgian capital as riot police tried to bring the situation under control.
Fighting broke out soon after the end of a largely peaceful march organised by trade unions and left wing politicians.
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Riot police use their batons to beat back protesters after a mass demonstration against austerity measures in Brussels, Belgium
Riot police use their batons to beat back protesters after a mass demonstration against austerity measures in Brussels, Belgium
Riot policemen charge past burning vehicles during the national trade union demonstration against plans to raise the pension age, slash social security benefits and cancel public sector wage rises
Riot policemen charge past burning vehicles during the national trade union demonstration against plans to raise the pension age, slash social security benefits and cancel public sector wage rises
Brussels burning up: Furious demonstrators burn vehicles as they clash with riot police in Brussels in the first mass protest against the new centre-right government's austerity policies
Brussels burning up: Furious demonstrators burn vehicles as they clash with riot police in Brussels in the first mass protest against the new centre-right government's austerity policies
Conflagration: Water cannons and tear gas were used in the centre of the Belgian capital
Conflagration: Water cannons and tear gas were used in the centre of the Belgian capital
A protester poses with a sword in front of a burning bin during the mass demonstrations today
A protester poses with a sword in front of a burning bin during the mass demonstrations today
Street fighting: Massed ranks of riot police advance on protesters' burning barricades 
Street fighting: Massed ranks of riot police advance on protesters' burning barricades 
A riot police officer grabs a flare during riots: Around 100,000 Belgians marched through central Brussels
A riot police officer grabs a flare during riots: Around 100,000 Belgians marched through central Brussels
Violent: A policeman crouches over an injured demonstrator as lines of police push back protesters
Violent: A policeman crouches over an injured demonstrator as lines of police push back protesters
Protesters hurl rocks and bottles: Fighting broke out soon after the end of a largely peaceful march
Protesters hurl rocks and bottles: Fighting broke out soon after the end of a largely peaceful march
Armed: A protester stands in front of burning vehicles with a makeshift club to defend himself from police
Armed: A protester stands in front of burning vehicles with a makeshift club to defend himself from police
A police officer hurt in the confrontation is helped by plainclothes police as colleagues stand guard
A police officer hurt in the confrontation is helped by plainclothes police as colleagues stand guard
A police officer shoves a demonstrator with his shield after the man got caught by advancing police lines
A police officer shoves a demonstrator with his shield after the man got caught by advancing police lines
For two hours, the demonstrators had peacefully marched down the main thoroughfares of central Brussels to protest government policies that will raise the pension age, contain wages and cut into public services.
But violence broke out at the end of the demonstration as police fired tear gas and water cannon in an effort to clear the streets. No casualties were immediately reported. 
'Metal barriers were thrown at the police, together with stones, and then the situation rapidly got worse,' said demonstrator Gilles Broussard.
'Hundreds of riot police were involved in trying to bring the situation under control - it all got very nasty.'
A new government was elected in Belgium last month and immediately pledged to raise the retirement age, cancel wage rises and cut social security benefits. This was all in line with strict guidelines from Europe, which views austerity as the key to the trading bloc's future.  
Provocative: Police fire water cannon at crowds of protesters at the end of a peaceful march through Brussels today
Provocative: Police fire water cannon at crowds of protesters at the end of a peaceful march through Brussels today
Water cannon fires at the crowds of worker protesters to clear them from the Brussels streets after the demonstration today
Water cannon fires at the crowds of worker protesters to clear them from the Brussels streets after the demonstration today
Masked protesters prepare to hurl rocks back at police moving in with small shields and truncheons for close-quarter fighting
Masked protesters prepare to hurl rocks back at police moving in with small shields and truncheons for close-quarter fighting
Riot police attack protesters as they try to clear the streets of Brussels after at least 100,000 workers marched through
Riot police attack protesters as they try to clear the streets of Brussels after at least 100,000 workers marched through
Smoke rises from firecrackers as groups of protesters are pushed back by the black-clad armed police 
Smoke rises from firecrackers as groups of protesters are pushed back by the black-clad armed police 
Belgium has a long postwar tradition of collective bargaining between employers and workers, and successive coalition governments representing a full scale of public opinion often have been able to contain social disagreements.
But the current coalition, made up of three pro-business parties and the centrist Christian Democrats, is the first in decades that has been able to set such a clear neoliberal free-market agenda.
Marchers said the government, which hopes to save the equivalent of more than £10million, was attacking ordinary people, while avoiding higher taxes for businesses.
'They are hitting the workers, the unemployed. They are not looking for money where it is, I mean, people with a lot of money,' said Philippe Dubois, who came from the industrial rust belt of Liege.  
The government says it has been forced to push through stringent austerity measures to keep the budget deficit within European Union constraints and insists that businesses need more lenient tax policies to become more competitive in the global market.
The trade unions object to government policies that promise to raise the pension age from 65 to 67, freeze the automatic link between wages and inflation, and cut public services in a way that would affect the entire population.
Working men: Demonstrators in their work wear and faces covered taunt police during the riot earlier today
Working men: Demonstrators in their work wear and faces covered taunt police during the riot earlier today
Taunts: The same protester is seen shrouded in a haze of pink smoke from behind the police lines
Taunts: The same protester is seen shrouded in a haze of pink smoke from behind the police lines
Masked protesters stand by an overturned car in streets slick with water presumably from water cannon fired by police
Masked protesters stand by an overturned car in streets slick with water presumably from water cannon fired by police
Hundreds of protesters mill around as vehicles burn after violence broke out at the end of a mass march
Hundreds of protesters mill around as vehicles burn after violence broke out at the end of a mass march
Tooling up: Protestors gather materials to use to fight back against police during the mass demonstration
Tooling up: Protestors gather materials to use to fight back against police during the mass demonstration
A protestor stands in front of a burning car: The demonstration was called by trade union coalitions and left-wing politicians
A protestor stands in front of a burning car: The demonstration was called by trade union coalitions and left-wing politicians
A protester wearing a flag of the Flanders Firefighters Association over his face gives a thumbs up as he stands in front of a burning car
A protester wearing a flag of the Flanders Firefighters Association over his face gives a thumbs up as he stands in front of a burning car
Injuries: A riot police officer is helped by a colleague after being hurt during a confrontation
Injuries: A riot police officer is helped by a colleague after being hurt during a confrontation
The policeman yells with pain, apparently clutching his collarbone, as he's led away from the front line
The policeman yells with pain, apparently clutching his collarbone, as he's led away from the front line
Makeshift weapons: A demonstrator hurls a disc-shaped projectile towards police lines during the fighting
Makeshift weapons: A demonstrator hurls a disc-shaped projectile towards police lines during the fighting
Arrests: Riot police officer arrest a demonstrator by carrying him bodily away from the protest
Arrests: Riot police officer arrest a demonstrator by carrying him bodily away from the protest
Black smoke rises into the air from the burning vehicles which have been shoved together as barricades
Black smoke rises into the air from the burning vehicles which have been shoved together as barricades
Defiant: A protester stands in front of the burning barricade with his arms raised apparently shouting at lines of police
Defiant: A protester stands in front of the burning barricade with his arms raised apparently shouting at lines of police
Confrontation: Smoke from a flare fills the air as demonstrators hurl projectiles towards riot police
Confrontation: Smoke from a flare fills the air as demonstrators hurl projectiles towards riot police
One for the album: Protesters take a selfie in front of a burning police motorcycle during the demonstration
One for the album: Protesters take a selfie in front of a burning police motorcycle during the demonstration
Retaliation: Protestors run after they burn a police motorbike 
Retaliation: Protestors run after they burn a police motorbike 
A man waves the Chilean flag in front of the burning motorcycle as demonstrators mill around behind
A man waves the Chilean flag in front of the burning motorcycle as demonstrators mill around behind
Mutual aid: Protesters help an injured comrade presumably hurt during clashes with police 
Mutual aid: Protesters help an injured comrade presumably hurt during clashes with police 
In custody: An arrested protestor bleeds as he lays on the ground next to another arrested person
In custody: An arrested protestor bleeds as he lays on the ground next to another arrested person
The ACV-CSC Christian trade union coalition boss Marc Leemans told Reuters: 'The signal is clear. People are angry, livid. This government's policies are totally unbalanced.'
ACV estimated that some 120,000 people had taken to the streets, with the police looking at a figure of more like 100,000.
Slogans on banners included: 'Eliminate the causes of the crisis, not the poor', 'Hands off the pension age', and 'human need not corporate greed'.
By late afternoon cars and other vehicles could be seen burning in the centre of Brussels. There were also reports of buildings being set on fire, and other property being damaged. 'There are disturbances in the centre of the centre,' said a Brussels police spokesman.
The unexpectedly massive march opens a month-long campaign by the trade unions against the business-friendly governing coalition and is to be capped with a nationwide general strike on December 15.
Despite the opening of government-led talks with employers and unions later Thursday, Socialist trade union leader Rudy De Leeuw vowed to continue the protests for weeks on end.


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2824057/Brussels-burns-100-000-protesters-clash-police-march-against-EU-austerity-measures.html#ixzz3IKw1Fl8e
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Reacties

  1. Zo bagatelliseert het journaal van de nederlanse staatstv de gebeurtenis door het "Hete herfstmiddag in Brussel" te noemen.

    BeantwoordenVerwijderen
  2. en " de politie had er de handen vol aan '.....

    BeantwoordenVerwijderen

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