Berlin (dpa) – Thousands of left-wing protesters used May 1 for their traditional protests, especially in Berlin, Hamburg and Frankfurt there were major clashes with the police.
In the capital, stones and bottles were thrown at the emergency services on Saturday evening. Rioters dragged dumpsters and pallets onto the street and set them on fire. There were numerous arrests.
At least 93 police officers were injured, according to the Senate’s Interior Department. According to the alliance that called for the demonstration, dozens of people were injured by the protesters. According to a statement, it accused police of beating protesters for no reason.
About 5,600 officials from different states were present in Berlin on Saturday. Numerous gatherings spread throughout the day remained silent, it was only in the evening that the so-called revolutionary May 1 demonstration in Berlin-Neukölln became a stir. The protest march with 8,000 to 10,000 people was ended by the meeting leader after he himself was attacked by the crowd, police said.
It was not until midnight that the situation had largely calmed down. There were smaller fires here and there, but no more major “incidents,” as the police said. Berlin Interior Senator Andreas Geisel (SPD) criticized the violence against police officers. You have nothing to do with political protest, Geisel said on Sunday. “We will not accept that some violence-seeking autonomists want us to use May 1 as a day for peaceful demonstrations.”
In Hamburg, the police on Saturday used water cannons against left-wing protesters in front of the Rote Flora in the Schanzenviertel. Time and again groups of up to 150 people who took to the streets despite a collection ban were arrested by the police. There were two arrests. Demos recorded by left-wing extremists were banned to protect against infection.
According to the police, a demonstration with about 80 participants between the Schanzenpark and metro station Schlump was stopped at noon. There were occasional fights as federal police officers pushed the protesters off the street from the anarchist scene. They had previously met at the train station and were driving in a loudspeaker car towards the Dammtor. After more than 100 meters they were stopped by strong police forces.
In Frankfurt there were also violent clashes between leftist groups and the police. Several officials were injured, the authority said. Fireworks and smoking pots were thrown during a demonstration. Officials were attacked with bottles and stones. In addition, emergency services were attacked by, among other things, “targeted blows with flagpoles from below behind the helmet visor”. That is why arrests have taken place. A water cannon was later used to interrupt a sit-in on a group of 20 people after police declared the meeting was over.
Police spoke of at least 3,000 people who first gathered in Opernplatz for a “day of rage” and then marched through the station area. According to eyewitnesses, almost all participants were masked and initially tried to adhere to the corona rules.
Many other cities in Germany often held multiple meetings on Labor Day on Saturday – mainly by unions and left-wing groups, but also from the right-wing spectrum and opponents of the corona measures. As a rule, however, there were no or only minor incidents.