Dutch anti-lockdown protesters who dressed up as Nazis and carried out a mock execution of a Jew in a ‘demonstration’ against Covid-19 measures have sparked anger online.
The group was caught on cameras dressed in Nazi outfits pretending to shoot a kneeling man in a concentration camp uniform with a Star of David on Saturday night.
A still of CCTV footage circulated online Monday, which showed about ten protesters pretending to enforce lockdown rules in the Dutch city of Urk.
One viral image showed a man in Nazi costume pointing a gun at the back of the “prisoner”‘s head, while another showed a man giving a Nazi salute while grinning at the camera.
Another image showed eight men in Nazi uniforms, one with a fake weapon, two in long black leather trench coats and three with pulled up mustaches reminiscent of Adolf Hitler.
The group apologized for the stunt Monday, made no mention of the pandemic and claimed they were attending a costume party after the footage sparked outrage online.
Authorities said they were investigating whether a crime had been committed against the ongoing Covid-19 restrictions during the demonstration.
A viral image showed a man in Nazi military costume pointing a pistol at the back of the prisoner’s head, wearing a concentration camp uniform decorated with a yellow Star of David
Dutch anti-lockdown protesters have dressed up as Nazis, pretended to enforce lockdown rules and staged a mock execution of a Jew in a stunt that has caused a stir online
An image posted online showed eight men in Nazi uniforms, one with a fake gun and two in long black leather trench coats
Comments on video site Dumpert called the men “sniffed brat” and a “bunch of id***s” and suggested it was a good thing they weren’t vaccinated because they would die as a result of natural selection.
While another read: ‘Shame on your grandpa and grandma probably lived through the war!’
Cees van de Bos, the mayor of Urk, a predominantly Christian city with the country’s lowest vaccination rate of just 23 percent, protested, saying it “clearly crossed a line.”
He said the apparent demonstration was “deeply loathed by the entire Urk community” and described the stunt as “highly reprehensible and highly inappropriate.”
He added: ‘We understand that these young people want to make their voices heard about the impact of the current and upcoming coronavirus measures,
“But we don’t understand how they do it. Not only the municipality of Urk, but the entire community completely disapproves of this way of protesting.’
The protesters apologized for the stunt, saying: “We had absolutely no intention of evoking memories of World War II.
“We want to emphasize that we are absolutely not anti-Semitic or against Jews, or support the German regime. Our sincere apologies.’
The protesters were later apparently seen partying in a bar with loud music. One man dances vigorously to the music, while another brings the Nazi salute in the background.
One of the protesters pays a Nazi salute as he poses in the German uniform for a demonstration against the ongoing Covid-19 restrictions in the Netherlands
The protesters were later apparently seen partying in a bar with loud music. You see one man dancing vigorously to the music, while another brings the Nazi salute in the background
After the ‘demonstration’, the men appeared to be enjoying themselves in a bar on Urk on Saturday evening
The group protested against Covid-19 restrictions, which remain in effect throughout the Netherlands. But it came days before the government announced it would further relax the rules by ending social distancing but introducing a pass for bars, restaurants and festivals.
The pass with proof of vaccination, recovery from the virus or a negative test will be required from September 25 for people aged 13 and older, Prime Minister Mark Rutte said.
The number of infections is falling in the Netherlands, which had some of Europe’s most lax restrictions at the start of the pandemic, but tightened dramatically during a brutal second wave.
“I am happy to announce today that the mandatory 1.5 meter social distancing rule will be deleted from September 25,” Rutte said at a television press conference.
‘This way, more people can visit a cafe or restaurant at the same time. It also means that outdoor festivals and sports events can run at full capacity again.’
The Dutch government rejected criticism from people like populist, coronasceptic politician Thierry Baudet who said the passes were an attempt to enforce vaccination.
‘No, nobody is obliged to be vaccinated with the corona ticket. With tests you can also enter somewhere and that will remain free for the time being,’ says Minister of Health Hugo de Jonge.
In the meantime, the Netherlands will still make face masks mandatory in public transport and at airports, but not on train or tram platforms.