Tuesday, January 26, 2021
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German police trained water cannons on hundreds of demonstrators
German police trained water cannons on hundreds of demonstrators, as protests turned violent at the venue of the G8 summit in the Baltic resort of Heiligendamm, local police said. Around 10,000 people blocked roads leading to the Heiligendamm, where leaders of the Group of Eight club of rich nations will begin their three-day summit later Wednesday, and hundreds of protesters breached security and swarmed the fence surrounding the resort. A spokesman for the police force responsible for security at the summit said: "The demonstrators are becoming more aggressive, and have blocked approach roads in six places around Heiligendamm, and are attacking police." European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso has already arrived at the site by helicopter. U.S. President George W. Bush arrived the previous day. The police spokesman said the cordon surrounding the protesters' camp was too weak. About 50 officers were unable to stop demonstrators from blocking the key highway between Rostock Airport and Heiligendamm, and some security checkpoints have reported attacks from protesters, he said. Protesters are setting up new road blocks as the police clear old ones, the spokesman said. After blocking the roads, protesters began moving toward the 6-km no-enter zone around the venue, where about 16,000 policemen and security guards have arrived from all over the country to provide security. Germany has taken extraordinary security precautions, including serious restrictions on air, water, railway and highway traffic across the region of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, and a 12-km eight-foot barbed-wire fence has been put up around Heiligendamm. "Transport is a nightmare. It is unclear how you are supposed to get where you need to. This summit is turning out to be too costly for us," a local citizen told RIA Novosti. Residents of Heiligendamm are having to walk around with special passes. A barbed metal mesh has been stretched along the seabed near the resort. Yachting and hunting will be banned until the end of the week.
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