Campaigners shut down roundabout in Eindhoven, 20 people arrested

Campaigners of Extinction Rebellion shut down a roundabout at Beukenlaan in Eindhoven on Saturday afternoon. They took over the roundabout while cycling and thus disrupted traffic for a while. Also activists climbed a tree and others chained themselves. The police deployed an arrest team to bring in the protesters. Twenty people have been arrested.

At around a quarter past one, demonstrators cycled across the roundabout. In this way they disrupted traffic. Other activists climbed a tree and chained themselves to a wooden construction. The police spent a good part of the afternoon trying to loosen up and detain the activists.

Negotiator deployed
Ultimately, an arrest team had to be involved to get the protesters out of the tree. A police negotiator talked to the activists. Then they came out of the tree themselves. The police have arrested a total of 20 people. It concerns eleven women and nine men. “Some activists had chained themselves or climbed a tree. Hence it took a little more time and effort to arrest them and take them to the station,” police said.

The activists speak of ‘a positive, but disruptive action to draw attention to the current climate crisis’. This action is part of the second phase of their ‘spring rebellion’, according to Extinction Rebellion.

‘Taking the climate crisis seriously’
“For example, we try to encourage the government to take the climate crisis seriously and do what is necessary to secure a viable future,” said a spokesman.

According to Extinction Rebellion, a conscious choice was made for a ‘positive action’. “We hope to arouse sympathy from the people who experience our action. Extinction Rebellion also stands for their future, not just our own.”

Traffic jam
The blockade of the roundabout caused congestion on the roads around the roundabout. But according to the activists, this was ‘only temporary’.

“But the disruption caused by the current climate crisis is not temporary,” emphasizes the Extinction Rebellion spokesperson. “Are we really going to do something about the climate or are we just going to keep it around?” That question was central to Saturday afternoon’s action. The roundabout around which people cycled was used as a metaphor. The cyclists, as it were, revolved around the climate crisis – the central point. “That symbolizes the current situation in which the climate crisis is still being discussed instead of taking action.”

Arrests
Agents have arrested various activists by order of the mayor. This happened, according to a police spokesperson, because the environmentalists blocked the roundabout and because they did not have permission to demonstrate.
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