Dozens of police injured in Berlin protests against virus curbs

first_img‘Serious consequences’ A few hundred protesters gathered to the west of the Brandenburg Gate on Sunday, according to an AFP photographer at the scene, with the majority wearing masks and observing social distancing guidelines.Despite Germany’s comparatively low toll, authorities are concerned at a rise in infections over recent weeks and politicians took to social media to criticize Saturday’s rally as irresponsible.”Yes, demonstrations should also be possible in times of coronavirus, but not like this,” Health Minister Jens Spahn said.”Distance, hygiene rules and masks serve to protect us all, so we treat each other with respect.”Others on Sunday expressed concern at Germany’s rising virus numbers and called for higher penalties for those who break the rules.”Those who deliberately endanger others must expect that this will have serious consequences for them,” Economy Minister Peter Altmaier told national news agency DPA. Bavarian premier Markus Soeder, meanwhile, warned in an interview with the Bild am Sonntag newspaper that now was “not the time for new relaxations or naive carelessness”.The second wave is “practically already here”, Soeder said. “It is creeping through Germany.”Soeder also said he was opposed to football matches with spectators, as officials from Germany’s Bundesliga prepare to gather this week to agree guidelines for the return of fans. Saturday saw 955 new infections in Germany — a level which the country had not seen since May 9, according to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) disease control agency.New infections rose only slightly by 240 in the last 24 hours, according to data published Sunday by the RKI. However, the relatively low figure was due to limited reporting by local authorities during the weekend.Topics : Police began dispersing the crowds in the late afternoon, but hundreds of protesters remained at the Brandenburg Gate late into the evening. Police have launched legal proceedings against organizers for not respecting virus hygiene rules.In a separate anti-fascist demonstration in the southern Neukoelln district, protesters threw stones at police officers, let off fireworks and damaged two police vehicles and a local party office.Several officers were injured while dispersing the crowd, including three who were treated in hospital after being hit in the face by shards of glass.Arrests were also made at smaller unofficial protests.A total of 1,100 officers were deployed during the day. Some 45 police officers were injured in a wave of weekend demonstrations in Berlin including protests against coronavirus restrictions, police said as protesters gathered again in smaller numbers on Sunday.The unruly protests, in which many demonstrators failed to wear masks or respect social distancing rules, have sparked a chorus of condemnation including calls for tougher penalties against those who violate restrictions aimed at curbing transmission of the deadly virus.  A total of 133 people were arrested during Saturday’s protests, which included a huge “day of freedom” demo against coronavirus restrictions, police said in a statement on Sunday.center_img The arrests were for offences including resisting police officers, breach of the peace and the use of unconstitutional symbols.Three officers required hospital treatment, police said.Around 20,000 people took part in the “day of freedom” demonstration, the majority not covering their nose and mouth or respecting Germany’s 1.5-meter social distancing requirement.The crowd, a mixture of hard left and right, and conspiracy theorists, shouted “We are the second wave” as they converged on the Brandenburg Gate, demanding “resistance” and dubbing the pandemic “the biggest conspiracy theory”.last_img read more

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Auckland councillors vote against relaxing trading hours

first_imgHowever the city centre’s business association says it shouldn’t be the council’s decision and believes retailers should decide whether they open or not on Easter Sunday. “Unlike other New Zealanders, people who work in retail are often on the job on public holidays. That means they often miss out on time with their families, their friends and their communities.” It means certain businesses like dairies and petrol stations will continue to be closed on Easter Sunday. NZ Herald 24 August 2017The Auckland Council has overwhelmingly voted against trading on Easter Sunday, with the mayor leading the move not to make the change.At a meeting this morning, councillors voted 20 to 1 to keep the ban on trading on the Christian holiday.Mayor Phil Goff issued a strong statement about his stance not to change – and was applauded for his support of keeping the status quo.“Make no mistake. If it’s Easter Sunday now that becomes commercialised, the next step will be Good Friday – because the same arguments apply,” he said.“Maybe Christmas Day and even conceivably Anzac Day.”Goff said the fact the council had to make the decision was a “hospital pass” from an indecisive Government.READ MORE: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11910009Auckland Council’s vote to keep Easter trading laws a ‘victory for retail workers and their families’TVNZ One News 24 August 2017Auckland businesses still won’t be able to trade on Easter Sunday next year after councilors voted this morning to keep a trading bylaw in place.The decision comes after the Auckland Council debated whether to scrap the controversial Easter Sunday bylaw.“This is a victory for retail workers and their families,” said FIRST Union Retail and Finance Secretary Maxine Gay. The Government delegated decision-making on the issue to local councils last year.https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/new-zealand/auckland-councils-vote-keep-easter-trading-laws-victory-retail-workers-and-their-familiesAuckland votes to keep Easter trading hoursStuff co.nz 24 August 2017Auckland Council has voted overwhelmingly to keep shops across the city closed on Easter Sunday.Councillors voted on the controversial issue on Thursday morning, after the government delegated decision-making on Easter trading to local councils last year.The politicians faced pressure from demonstrators who gathered outside the Auckland Council Chambers in a last ditch effort to sway their vote.Meanwhile, Family First also welcomed council’s decision.“The only people demanding Easter Sunday trading are those who will make money from it,” said national director Bob McCoskrie.“But economic improvement needs to be finely balanced with family and community time.“Tourists will cope. Many countries have public holidays with shops closed, and tourists simply plan around it, accepting it as part of the local culture and identity,” McCoskrie said.READ MORE: https://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/96101130/auckland-votes-to-keep-easter-trading-hoursAuckland and Christchurch councillors vote against Easter Sunday tradingNewsTalk ZB 24 August 2017Auckland and Christchurch councillors have voted against trading on Easter Sunday, after about half of councils voted to keep it.Strong words were made to keep the ban on trading in Auckland, with councillors voting 20 to 1.Auckland Mayor Phil Goff was applauded for his support of keeping the status quo.“Make no mistake, if it’s Easter Sunday now that becomes commercialised, the next step will be Good Friday, because the same arguments apply. Maybe Christmas Day and even conceivably Anzac Day,” he said.The vote comes after two recent surveys showed many within Auckland were divided about the idea of more retailers being allowed to open their doors on the Christian holiday.READ MORE: http://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/news/national/auckland-councillors-vote-against-relaxing-trading-hours/last_img read more

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Funeral services pending for racing legend Arlo Becker

first_imgNORWAY, Iowa – IMCA and the rest of the automotive racing world are in mourning following the passing of a legend.Arlo Becker, the first-ever IMCA Modified track champion died Monday, June 12 of injuries sustained when a tractor he was driving overturned in rural Benton County.Becker, 79, had raced for more than half a century at tracks across Iowa and the Midwest. Champion at Vinton Speedway in 1979, the first year for the IMCA Modified, Becker qualified for the Super Nationals main event in 1993.He won his 51st and final sanctioned feature in the class in 2005.Becker continued to be a mainstay in the sport, promoting demolition events and attending local races and reunions.“There are so many Arlo stories. He was a rare breed of promoter, whatever the venue was,” said Kathy Root, former IMCA owner and president and now chair of the sanctioning body’s executive committee. “One of my favorite stories was when he sold ‘I Love Arlo’ T-shirts, along with ‘I Hate Arlo’ shirts at the Vinton speedway.”“Arlo was one of the original IMCA Modified drivers and his participation helped to promote the new class,” she added.Funeral arrangements are pending.last_img read more

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