Climate activists have gathered in Luetzerath, Germany, for at least two years to protest the proposed demolition of the community to make way for the expansion of a nearby coal mine.
This past weekend, the maybe most well-known climate activist of our time visited the North Rhine-Westphalia location to show support before being arrested by police, purportedly for refusing to leave.
According to Politico, Greta Thunberg, 20, initially appeared at a rally outside of Luetzerath on Saturday to stand with other protesters opposing the growth of the Garzweiler coal mine and denounce the “shameful” agreement between mine authorities and the German government.
The next day, Thunberg returned to the protest area where she joined other protestors in singing and dancing until police arrived and ordered everyone to leave. Police claim that when Thunberg refused to cooperate, two cops grabbed her up and hauled her away, according to the German tabloid Bild.
Police report that 30 or more service vehicles were damaged during the rally, and that twelve people in total were detained or arrested during the evacuation.
As they attempted to remove demonstrators, police allege that roughly 70 officers suffered injuries. They also claim that nine activists were sent to the hospital in an ambulance and that no one was critically hurt.
However, according to the protest organizers, some of the protesters suffered significant wounds. According to the BBC, Thunberg had denounced “police aggression” during the evacuation the day before she was removed from the scene.
Although it’s unclear if she did so when she was approached on Sunday, police noted in response to her assertion that she had never attempted to communicate with them directly about what was occurring at the location.
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