Announcements of tightened covid restrictions in various European countries have been met with large scale protests across the continent.
I personally attended demonstrations and marches in Vienna and Bregenz, Austria, both of which were very well attended and focused heavily on Austria’s recently announced lockdown and the country’s unprecedented announcement that covid-19 vaccinations are to be made compulsory in the country from 1 February 2022. Heavy fines will be levied against those who do not comply and jail sentences are threatened against those who do not or cannot pay. Germany looks likely to follow suit, with Health Minister Jens Spahn quoted as saying that the majority of Germans would be “vaccinated, cured or dead” by the Spring.
Both of the demonstrations I attended in Austria were well organised and peaceful. The large crowds were extremely well behaved and I did not witness any violence, threatening behaviour or heavy handed police action at either venue.
I will post pictures and videos in the Austria forum shortly.
Protests also raged across Italy, Croatia, Belgium and The Netherlands, with one in Rotterdam sadly turning violent.
As I wrote earlier, the Winter lockdown season is well and truly under way in Europe. Additionally, governments across the continent are ramping up the pressure on citizens to accept a vaccination, with more and more basic rights and freedoms being removed from dissenters. As the continent moves deeper into the Winter, this situation can only deteriorate as panic spreads over rising case numbers. Restrictions will become tighter, lockdowns will be extended and protests will inevitably continue to erupt.
Europe can be a wonderful continent to visit during the winter months, with ski resorts, traditional Christmas markets and New Year concerts.
Sadly, this Winter is not the time even to think about enjoying any of those things.
Join the discussion on our covid forum.