• Germany's news in English
 

Police clear Stuttgart 21 protest camp

Published: 15 Feb 2012 10:45 GMT+01:00

City officials said on Wednesday morning they were pleased with how the operation in the Schlossgarten park went. They said 2,500 officers had encountered little violence.

But protesters, who were trying to protect 176 trees that authorities say need to be cut down or moved as part of the project, charged that police had been overly aggressive during the eviction and had even attacked people with batons.

A spokesman for the protesters, Matthias Herrmann, called the operation “hectic and escalating.”

But a Stuttgart police spokesman said that there had been only “occasional baton use” when protesters attempted to set up a barricade. A 38-year-old man was arrested after he allegedly set off fireworks near officials, according to police.

Others protesters had to be forcibly cut away after they chained themselves to trees. Some used pallets to erect barriers on access roads, police said. Two even encased their arms in concrete and police were still figuring out how to deal with them as of mid-morning.

Stuttgart 21 is a multi-billion-euro project that aims to transform the Baden-Württemberg state capital into a major European transport hub by laying 57 kilometres of new track and rebuilding the city’s main train station underground while turning it around 90 degrees.

But many have baulked at the cost of the plan and what they say will be damage to the local environment. Violent protests flared in 2010, but the government has insisted that construction must continue. On Sunday, protesters tried to mount heavy equipment to prevent the cutting down of trees but were removed by police in a prelude to Wednesday's eviction.

At the park, protesters had set up dozens of tents and tree houses before the police operation began at about 3 am. Officers first asked protesters to leave on their own – which some did – before they began the eviction.

Stuttgart 21 project spokesman Wolfgang Dietrich said the police operation had gone “very well” because protesters had, for the most part, abstained from violence. Authorities could begin felling trees as early as Wednesday afternoon.

The Local/DAPD/mdm

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

11:10 February 15, 2012 by pepsionice
Yeah, so the vote came and the residents of the city spoke....full speed ahead. The '21' crew are mostly just losers who won't accept the will of the people. Total cost of the 21 project over the next decade....with all the cops and higher security? Probably double what the project costs in the first place. The '21' protesters are making it the most expensive project in German history. My suggestion as they arrest these guys.....put them on house arrest for twelve months, so they can't go anywhere near construction sites.
17:39 February 15, 2012 by Englishted
@pepsionice

Or leave them in the concrete and use them on another building project.
22:17 February 15, 2012 by JDee
A very sad day for Stuttgart. We still have a lot to learn about being a civilised species.
19:01 March 24, 2012 by JohnJefkins
I agree. The people have voied in favour of the project. The protesters should accept that vote. These protesters need to think of all the air flights (eg Paris-Munich) that will be switched to train when the project is finished.

Far more benefit to the environment than the loss of a few trees!

High Speed Rail has a proven record of switching people from air to rail.
Today's headlines
Shocked fishermen hook a shell of a catch
Locals enjoy the normally tranquil Seeburger See

Shocked fishermen hook a shell of a catch

A couple of friends who went for a quiet spot of fishing on Lake Seeburg in Lower Saxony on Monday got the fright of their life when they pulled up their net to find an artillery shell inside. READ  

10 facts to celebrate Leipzig's 1,000th birthday
Leipzig's impressive skyline. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

10 facts to celebrate Leipzig's 1,000th birthday

This weekend the city of Leipzig is celebrating its 1,000th anniversary, since it was first mentioned by the chronicler Thietmar of Merseburg in 1015. The Local gives some insight into one of Germany's most vibrant cities. READ  

Police tighten borders ahead of German G7
File photo: DPA

Police tighten borders ahead of German G7

German authorities have reintroduced border controls two weeks before the leaders of the G7 economies gather in Elmau, southern Bavaria. READ  

North Germany feels pain of Russia sanctions
Photo: DPA file photo

North Germany feels pain of Russia sanctions

Schleswig Holstein's exports to Russia have dropped by 31 percent, state finance minister Reinhard Meyer said in comments reported by the Hamburger Abendblatt on Tuesday. READ  

German twins die fighting for Isis in Iraq
The twin brothers are both reported to have died in suicide attacks. Photo: Dabiq magazine

German twins die fighting for Isis in Iraq

German twins from Castrop-Rauxel in North Rhine-Westphalia have died fighting for the Islamist group Isis in Iraq, the militia's official magazine reported in its latest publication. READ  

Toilet theft at interior ministry causes a stink
Photo: DPA

Toilet theft at interior ministry causes a stink

Thieves have stolen toilet seats, taps and loo paper holders from the new interior ministry building in Berlin, making it difficult for mandarins to get comfortable in their new surroundings. READ  

Berlin jumps ahead on new rent control law
Blocks of flats in the Berlin district of Wedding. Photo: DPA

Berlin jumps ahead on new rent control law

Berlin is to be the only state in Germany to introduce rent controls immediately after the law allowing them comes into effect on June 1st. READ  

Ireland vote builds gay marriage momentum
Photo: DPA

Ireland vote builds gay marriage momentum

Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU) is feeling the pressure from opposition MPs, its own gay supporters and its Social Democratic Party (SPD) allies to look again at allowing gay marriage after Ireland's popular "yes" vote on Friday. READ  

Amazon 'paying local tax on sales in Germany'
Photo: Uli Deck/dpa

Amazon 'paying local tax on sales in Germany'

According to the Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper, online retailer Amazon has started paying tax on profits from its sales to German customers in Germany instead of in Luxembourg READ  

German woman, 65, has quadruplets
Photo: DPA

German woman, 65, has quadruplets

A 65-year-old German woman, who already has 13 children, has given birth to quadruplets after undergoing an artificial insemination procedure in Ukraine. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Travel
Why the train strike is bad for passengers and workers
National
Meet Germany's Eurovision hope
Business & Money
Is 2015 a new moment for jobsharing?
Features
How the LGBT rights movement was born in Germany
National
Why you don't make bomb jokes at the airport
National
Why Germany needs a little less tipple
National
Who Germans and Americans trust... and don't
Politics
What the UK election means for Germany
National
Why Germany is great for mums
Features
The Germans with GI dads
Five ways Germany falls short on gay rights
Travel
Giant tortoise found riding Munich rail
National
FCK CPS? A-OK with court
Politics
Opinion: Brexit's dangers for Germany
Features
Smart kids all want to work for BMW
National
Minister shows off top Denglisch
National
Germany's 'other genocide' in Africa
National
Arms firms get a 'must do better' mark on ethics
Sport
Bayern's anticlimactic 25th Bundesliga win
Politics
A Greek learning politics in Germany
Features
The battle of the "Gates of Berlin"
National
Germany's 'very poor' lobbying record
National
Germany's favourite baby names of 2014
Politics
Merkel's 15 years at the top of German politics
Travel
Lowest of the low: how woman exploited Germanwings crash
Features
Spice up asparagus season with The Local's serving suggestions
Sport
Football and the €30,000 firework
Technology
Why scientists oppose killer robots
National
'Cannibal cop' gets 8 years
National
Which city is Germany's worst for drivers?
Technology
Electrifying 'Ostalgia'
National
Cologne Cathedral returns from space
Pupils mourn lost classmates
National
Freed after 25 years on death row
Shutterstock
Sponsored Article
10 things you didn’t know about Zagreb (and why you should go)
Is your workload 'out of control'? You're not alone...
Sponsored Article
What expat parents should ask before choosing a school
Features
Paddy's Day, Berlin style
National
Why east Germans are happy to get it on on camera
National
Uplifting thoughts to get you through the last week of winter
National
What would you do with a 250-year-old pretzel?
National
Who wants the Olympics more - Hamburg or Berlin?
Features
Just why is the German flag Schwarz, Rot, Gold?
Business & Money
Getting German workers and bosses thinking positive
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

6,641
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd