Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte condemned the “criminal violence” on Monday, saying it was unacceptable and that “99%” of Dutch people support the restrictions.
Clean-up operations continued on Tuesday for the second day in a row in several city centres, including the port city of Rotterdam and Den Bosch in the south, where images showed gangs of rioters looting shops.
The mayors of several cities reacted angrily, the mayor of Rotterdam, Ahmed Aboutaleb, denouncing the rioters as “shameless thieves”, reported the national TV channel NOS.
The protests had started on a small scale Saturday night, and a Covid-19 testing centre was set on fire in the village of Urk, in the north of the country.
They spread out on Sunday, with the use of water cannons, tear gas grenades and mounted police in Eindhoven, Rotterdam and Amsterdam.
The Netherlands has seen 35.635 new cases of coronavirus over the past week, and more than 500 people died in the past week, according to the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM).