Some people are apparently nervous: in Berlin, a driver used pepper spray against “last generation” protesters. The group paralyzed traffic in several places in the capital on Monday, a map shows.
He apparently resorted to vigilantism and pepper spray instead of waiting for the police. In Berlin, investigations are underway against a man who attacked “Last Generation” protesters with a substance from a spray can.
The incident occurred on Monday in the Prenzlauer Berg district, as shown in a video distributed by the “Last Generation,” among others. In the photo you can see how several supporters of the “Last Generation” sit down to form a blockade on the road at the intersection of Landsberger Allee and Conrad-Blenkle-Straße, while a traffic jam has already formed in front of them. A man approaches the group and sprays at least two protesters several times in the face from a short distance before kicking one of the men and pushing another. “Away, you bums!” he calls out to them. The road blockade has nevertheless formed.
The verification team of star was able to verify the authenticity of the video. A spokeswoman for the Berlin police said star-Inquiry: “The incident and the video are known. We have started investigations on suspicion of grievous bodily harm.” The man has not yet been identified. The public prosecutor’s assessment of the incident will also include whether the suspect had a justification, such as self-defense, for the violent action. The penalty for grievous bodily harm is three months to ten years in prison.
“Last Generation” blocks streets in Berlin
The “Last Generation” recently announced an autumn of climate protests in the capital. Perhaps this Monday morning was a first foretaste. According to their own statements, the police got ahead of the protesters in the cat-and-mouse game in seven places and were able to prevent blockades, but according to the police spokeswoman, the activists still managed to occupy the streets and themselves in a total of more than 30 places stuck in place in a familiar manner. Several motorway exits, various federal highways and also bus traffic in many parts of the capital were affected, as a look at the map shows:
The impact on car traffic in the capital was sometimes enormous due to the blockades. The traffic news on the radio was clearly dragging on. In many places there was a standstill on the streets.
Police warned against vigilantism
The police responded to the announced actions. Around 500 officers were present throughout the city to prevent or break up the blockades. “Please stay calm and do not intervene yourself,” the emergency services appealed to stressed drivers in advance. “We understand if you are annoyed by the protests, but please do not intervene or even use violence.” After hours, in the early afternoon, the police reported that the blockades had largely been cleared – again thanks to the use of liters of cooking oil to remove the stuck hands from the road.
In addition to the pepper spray incident, there were reportedly other incidents: In the Spandau district, a man is said to have tried to remove people from the street on his own before the police stopped him. An officer was slightly injured in the hand during an arrest in Mitte. In addition, the roadway was damaged at some blockade locations. Sometimes the police requested the support of the technical operations unit because of “stubborn adhesive mixtures”. According to the “Last Generation” more than 50 people were taken into custody on Monday. Final figures from the police were not yet available by the afternoon. The speaker called on star-Inquiry at least 220 people who are said to have taken part in the blockades. Several of them were taken into custody to verify their identities. Once again, the “Last Generation” accused the police of using inappropriate force against protesters by using painful attacks.
When asked, the police spokeswoman emphasized that certain “transport techniques” would only be used if the people did not comply with repeated requests to voluntarily leave the road after the meeting had been dissolved. If these “transport techniques” cause pain, this is “legally permissible” within the framework of so-called direct coercion.
“We are determined to continue this peaceful resistance for as long as necessary,” said the “Last Generation”. She once again called for a “fundamental change” in climate policy. “Away from oil, gas and coal by 2030.” In addition to scuffles, the blockers also received encouragement from passers-by on Monday, as reporters from the DPA news agency reported.
The autumn protests of the “Last Generation” should continue. “We will not leave Berlin until there is a political change: away from fossil fuels and towards fairness!” said spokeswoman Carla Hinrichs when announcing the action weeks. The activists are prepared to hold out for a long time. They have “a lot of glue ” in stock.
Sources: , , , , news agencies DPA and AFP
I have been working in the news industry for over 6 years, first as a reporter and now as an editor. I have covered politics extensively, and my work has appeared in major newspapers and online news outlets around the world. In addition to my writing, I also contribute regularly to 24 Hours World.