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Yellow-vests: more “war-like” scenes in Charleroi

There were likely to be more violent scenes between “vandals” and Charleroi police Saturday night and into Sunday morning, warned Charleroi police spokesman David Quinaux. There had been similar incidents the previous evening. He revealed that “at around 9:30pm, police intercepted” a group of about 150 people on the Jules Hiernaux square, the famous “Marsupilami round-about”. 

At around 11pm, about 100 people were still hanging around the surrounding area in smaller groups and they tried to continue the fighting, claims David Quinaux. Like the previous night, there was a lot of damage: urban property removed, publicity sign torn down… 

This time police were ready to intervene at the slightest sign of trouble. They had “four platoons, two water cannons and an armoured vehicle”, says David Quinaux. At around 9:30pm, “we gave the order to intercept” and started to “disperse the protesters with a water cannon”.  Some protesters had set light to barricades on the Marsupilami round-about, where the violence had begun the night before. 

Police say “vandals” have been replacing the yellow-vest demonstrators in the neighbourhood at night. David Quinaux described it as “urban guerrilla warfare”, with people pulling up paving slabs to use them as missiles. Police say vehicles have been damaged and people have been injured, but the spokesman said “the operation is ongoing, we’ll work it all out later” at around 11pm. 

There had already been three administrative arrests by that time. 

The Brussels Times