Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

Greta Thunberg arrested by Dutch police twice on same day during The Hague protests

Police say they arrested more than 400 people on Saturday for ignoring orders to disperse

Vishwam Sankaran
Sunday 07 April 2024 17:32 BST
Greta Thunberg detained by police at Extinction Rebellion climate protest in The Hague

Climate activist Greta Thunberg was detained twice on Saturday by the Dutch police at a demonstration in The Hague in the Netherlands.

Ms Thunberg was arrested and detained for several hours along with other protesters who were attempting to block a major highway into The Hague but was released later in the evening.

She then rejoined a group of protesters who were blocking a different road and was detained a second time.

Protesters have attempted to block the A12 highway in the Netherlands several times in recent months demanding that there be an end to subsidies and tax breaks to companies linked to fossil fuel industries.

Before being taken by officers in a police van, Ms Thunberg told reporters that she was protesting as the world was facing an existential crisis.

“We are in a planetary emergency and we are not going to stand by and let people lose their lives and livelihood and be forced to become climate refugees when we can do something,” the Swedish climate activist said.

When asked if she was worried about being arrested, Ms Thunberg said “Why should I be?”

She flashed a victory sign as she sat in the bus used by police to transport detained protesters.

India's health ministry reviews preparedness for management of heat-related illnesses

Before the demonstration, the Extinction Rebellion campaign group said activists would block a main highway into The Hague.

“The march was organised by Extinction Rebellion and was part of a plan to pressure the Dutch government in the run-up to another planned debate about fossil subsidies in June,” the group said in a post on X.

After a heavy police presence was deployed, a small group sat down on another road but were detained after ignoring police orders.

“We are unstoppable, another world is possible,” the demonstrators chanted as they waved flags and banners.

“This is a dead-end street,” one banner read.

Police shared in a post on X that they arrested more than 400 people over the day for ignoring orders to disperse.

Ms Thunberg’s activism since 2018 has inspired a global movement demanding stronger efforts from governments to fight climate change.

Extinction Rebellion said it will continue to protest until the Dutch government stops using public funds to subsidise the oil and gas industry.

“Meanwhile, the ecological crisis continues to rage and the country’s outgoing cabinet pretends that we have all the time in the world, while the crisis is now,” it said in a post shared on X.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in