Dutch soldiers engage police in brawl

15th April 2005, Comments 0 comments

15 April 2005AMSTERDAM — Police reinforcements from two provinces rushed to the Limburg town of Weert in the early hours of Friday morning as a large group of soldiers besieged the local police station.

15 April 2005

AMSTERDAM — Police reinforcements from two provinces rushed to the Limburg town of Weert in the early hours of Friday morning as a large group of soldiers besieged the local police station.

Units of the military police, Marechaussee, and the police — drawn from all of Limburg province and from the east of Brabant province — traded punches with the soldiers in front of the police station before finally restoring order.

A 33-year-old soldier was arrested and the military police said on Friday that more arrests could not be ruled out.

The trouble began on early Friday morning during a discharge party being held by soldiers who attended the military training college in the town. A soldier came to blows with a civilian and then many of the soldier's comrades got involved.

When police arrived and detained the soldier, his party directed their attention to the police officers. The police decided to detain more of the soldiers, but this escalated the situation.

Witnesses described seeing punches being thrown left and right as four police officers, two men and two women, were roughed up. Police called in reinforcements as the rioting soldiers besieged the police station. Eventually order was restored.

The soldiers were to be discharged from service on Friday but Weert's mayor Jacques Niederer has demanded that the soldiers involved in the fighting take responsibility for their actions.

Niederer expressed shock at the aggression shown by the soldiers and said, "people have a right to expect more of a sense of responsibility from soldiers".


[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2005]

Subject: Dutch news

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