Activists at the site of a German village threatened with demolition to make way for a coal mine expansion were urging others to come join their efforts on January 9, according to an appeal on their website.
Footage posted to Twitter by activist and Mainz city councilor Maurice Conrad the previous day at Lutzerath shows police in riot gear restraining one individual. “Incidentally, this is what happens when citizens and climate activists demonstrate peacefully,” Conrad tweeted.
Police from the nearby city of Aachen said activists were “pelting security forces and police officers” and that the “peaceful event in which the police acted extremely restrained … turned into violence for no comprehensible reason”. Police urged protesters to “refrain from further violent actions.”
The activist group Initiative Lutzerath urged people who want to join the action to prepare themselves for the long haul, saying the “evacuation attempt will take one to six weeks”.
Activists said lignite mine expansion goes against Germany’s pledges under the Paris Agreement, Deutsche Welle reported.
The village of Lutzerath has no permanent residents, according to Deutsche Welle. Credit: Maurice Conrad via Storyful