Protest against 'Covid dictatorship' cannot go forward in Brussels

Protest against 'Covid dictatorship' cannot go forward in Brussels
Illustration picture shows a demonstration against coronavirus regulations in Brussels on 6 September 2020. © BELGA/NICOLAS MAETERLINCK

A demonstration in Brussels aiming to denounce a "Covid dictatorship" and the latest round of restrictions to halt the spread of the coronavirus and planned for this weekend will not be allowed to go forward.

The demonstration is organised by a group going by the name of Black Sheep Belgium who has called on Belgians to gather on Rond-Point Schuman, in the heart of the European Quarter, to denounce the "freedom-killer" restrictions.

"It is time to reclaim our rights which have been, until recently, ignored," the demonstrators wrote on Facebook. "We are asking you, the Belgian people, to come and claim back your rights."

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Over 3,000 people on Facebook have said they were interested in or attending the protest, set to take place on 25 October and dubbed the "National Demonstration Against the Liberticide Covid Dictatorship."

Demonstrators have urged participants to come dressed in black as a sign of mourning for the sectors impacted by the crisis and the slew of restrictions placed as the government rushes to keep infection rates manageable for hospitals.

"We represent the administrators of anonymous groups and we fight against the death of freedom in all its forms," the organisers wrote on their Facebook, which was created on 17 October.

The City of Brussels has not approved the demonstration but police said they were preparing for the arrival of a large number of demonstrators.

A similar demonstration organised by the group folivirus (viral madness) in September in Brussels drew some 400 demonstrators —with some brandishing signs reading "Live your life, the epidemic is over"— and led to arrests and confrontations with police.

Gabriela Galindo

The Brussels Times

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