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UN special envoy wants to investigate police operations in Berlin against anti-Covid demonstrators

Berlin - The United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture, Nils Melzer, has announced a review of the police operation against demonstrators who protested against the Corona measures in Berlin. He and his team had received many reports of police violence at the rallies, he told the Berliner Zeitung. During the banned demonstrations last weekend, the emergency services had partly thrown protesters to the ground. Recordings of it sparked outrage on social media.

The lawyer said: “We will now look through the material and evaluate it. Every single communication and every single video must be carefully verified and I will also speak to direct eyewitnesses. But my impression is that in several cases there is reason enough for an official intervention on my part with the federal government."

Melzer stressed that he was concerned about the actions taken by security forces against demonstrators; "In all regions of the world, the authorities are apparently increasingly viewing their own people as an enemy."

Interior Senator justifies police operation
With regard to the Corona demonstrators in Berlin, he took the view "that the majority of the protests were not violent rioters". There were women, children, cyclists and elderly people. "It is absolutely unacceptable when the police take action against defenseless demonstrators for mere administrative offenses or civil disobedience with sometimes life-threatening violence."

Berlin's Senator for the Interior Andreas Geisel (SPD) had defended the police action against the demonstrators. It was the task of the police to enforce the applicable rules on infection protection.

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