200 people arrested and six police officers hospitalised amid anti-lockdown protest in Australia
“The behaviour seen by police was so hostile and aggressive."
Over 200 people have been arrested and six police officers have been hospitalised amid an anti-lockdown protest which took place in Melbourne in Australia on Saturday.
Thousands of protestors gathered with footage showing objects being thrown at police.
It came as Melbourne announced the extension of strict lockdown measures to combat rising Covid-19 case numbers amid the Delta variant.
The clashes came a day before Victoria marked the first day the entire state was placed back into lockdown.
People in the area are being told to only leave home for essential reasons such as food shopping, education, work or exercise within 5km from home. Parts of Melbourne have also had curfews imposed.
Playgrounds, basketball hoops, skate parks and outdoor exercise equipment in the city was also closed and masks are not permitted to be removed to drink alcoholic beverages.
Exercise in the city will also be limited to just one other person and dependants if they can’t be left at home
More than $1.1 million in fines will be handed out after the six police officers were hospitalised and 218 people were arrested during the massive anti-lockdown rally.
In a statement, Victoria Police said: “The behaviour seen by police was so hostile and aggressive that they were left with no choice but to use all tactics available to them."
"This is not where we wanted to be as a community. It’s not a decision we wanted to make after Victorians have sacrificed so much, but we have no other option. Cases need to be lower and vaccination rates need to be higher," Premier Daniel Andrews said on Saturday.
“There’s a million things that we miss about life before the pandemic and a million things we’re looking forward to doing again once we’re through this outbreak – each of those is a reason to get vaccinated.”