Just as in the French capital Paris a few weeks ago, protests signs and graffiti are going up in Berlin, warning citizens that the extreme left will not let a return to normal life happen without some sort of mass demonstration. The banner claims that the actions are aimed ‘against the rich’ (gegen die Reichen).
Berlin vowed today to deploy 5,000 police officers to enforce the lockdown rules amid fears that the planned protests will cause a surge in infections. Several cars have been torched overnight already.
Mr Andreas Geisel, the city’s interior minister, tried to comfort Berliners as they saw the protest signs going up. He declared that ‘May 1 must not become another Ischgl’, referring to an Austrian ski resort which became a hotbed of Corona-infections two months ago, just before Europe went into lockdown.
‘I don’t want demonstrations to lead to health dangers… the police will be firmly implementing the rules.’
The city’s radical left groups, whose demonstration is usually the focal point of May 1 festivities, have changed their strategy this year to avoid the risk of infection, vowing on social media to spread guerilla styled protests all around the German capital. In their manifesto, they promised to ‘flood the streets with anti-racist, anti-patriarchal and anti-capitalist content.’
‘We take the protective measures seriously… and will act responsibly.’
Extremists from left and right have declared they would attend the rallies and declared a ‘democratic resistance’ to the lockdown.
The protesters claim that the restrictions are an illegal attempt to curtail civil liberties by an authoritarian state.
Last week also hundreds of people showed up. Berlin police wants to prevent this from happening again this time.