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At least 116 injured in Stuttgart clash

The Local · 1 Oct 2010, 08:52

Published: 01 Oct 2010 08:52 GMT+02:00

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Demonstrators said that several hundred people had been injured when police used water cannons, pepper spray and batons to break up the crowds blockading the work site.

The police said 116 protestors had been injured, 10 of whom had to be taken to hospital. Several police were also injured, they said.

Baden Württemberg’s Interior Minister Heribert Rech squarely blamed the protestors for the escalation.

Click here for photos of the protest.

Shortly after 1 am, Stuttgart 21 workers began cutting down the first 25 trees to clear the area for construction work. Some 300 will be felled over coming weeks.

Nine demonstrators attempted to climb and occupy the trees designated for clearing but they were removed by police. Many demonstrators attached themselves to the trunks and branches of other trees.

About 1,000 police officers from four different states were deployed against protestors yesterday, a police spokesman said. Pepper spray was used against protestors in “isolated” cases because they had chained themselves to emergency vehicles and had interfered with police barriers, the spokesman said.

There were also isolated cases of demonstrators throwing stones at police.

Some 99 people were treated by the German Red Cross (DRK), 80 of them for irritated eyes. Ten were taken to hospital. Police said that six minors were among the injured: four 16-year-olds, a 14-year-old and a 12-year-old.

Demonstrators put the total number of injured at several hundred. About 1,000, furthermore, had suffered some form of eye irritation, they said. A teenage girl had suffered a concussion, they added.

“The police are extremely aggressive,” a spokeswoman said.

Story continues below…

A particular row has erupted over the role of children and teenagers in the demonstrations. Police said that youngsters who had been taking part in an education demonstration broke through police barriers and joined the Stuttgart 21 protest.

Interior Minister Rech defended the police actions. His spokeswoman Alice Loyson-Siemering said: “The aggression came from the demonstration and not from the security forces.”

The €7-billion Stuttgart 21 project plans to make the city part of a 1,500-kilometre high-speed rail route across Europe. It will require 16 new tunnels, 18 new bridges, 60 kilometres of new train track and three new stations. Stuttgart's terminus will be transformed into an underground through-station – requiring a dramatic re-landscaping of the Schlossgarten.

DPA/DAPD/The Local/dw

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Your comments about this article

09:57 October 1, 2010 by JDee
better just to watch the videos on youtube, the authorities created this showdown, they did everything possible to windup the protestors, repeatedly moving them by shoving. nobody 'broke into' the protest because the park was and still is open! the kids were just in the park, i would say 95% of protestors are there to stand and be counted, the other 5% just trying to block the passage of vehicles by sitting down on the grass or pathways, the way they started to cutdown the trees was one of the most callous, cowardly and disrespectful ( to the protestors ) things i've ever experienced
10:02 October 1, 2010 by freechoice
wholly molly, with eyes bulging like that, what kind of pepper sprays they used? mexican habanero chillis?
10:28 October 1, 2010 by elboertjie
Look at the type of clothing the so-called police is wearing; the protestors are clearly underdressed for such an encounter.

It would seem that then these police are wearing such uniforms, it changes their mentality and psychology and turn them into monsters. They have the attitude of: 'I have special clothing, and this gives me special rights over you and I may thus do whatever I think is okay.'.

This is happening all over the world, where such special instruments are seperating humans.

I wonder how these so-called police are living after-hours, returning home and look their family in the eyes. Oh wait, or are they perhaps shipped in from another area where they have no emotional involvement?
12:10 October 1, 2010 by peter douglas
This is democracy at its worst,how can a goverment that is elected by the people turn against them with such violence because they have a different view with those in power with vested intrests.Arise stuttgart they may pepper spray you whip you with batons but your resilience will not go unnoticed all over this great country.Its the beginning and end of cdu-csu leadership in stuttgart.God bless you the courage you,ve shown.
12:13 October 1, 2010 by DinhoPilot
The power of power versus the power of will! It sucks to be them!
08:56 October 2, 2010 by ebermannstadt
This is an atrocity and I'm surprised the media is playing it down. I hope some legal firm steps in and offer these victims a class action law suite against the police force. There have to serious consequences. If not then we can just kiss freedom of speech and democracy goodbye and accept we live in a new fascist age like the UK and America.

The police have to be made to pay for this.
13:13 October 23, 2010 by Landmine

Dude, wake up -what fairytale country do you live in? An attrocity... ha ha

You forget modern day Germany was molded to resemble America and the UK after we got rid of the fascists that took over Germany in the 20's. Does the name Adolf ring a bell?
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