Extra security for Dutch Remembrance Day

2nd May 2011, Comments 0 comments

Extra security measures will be in place for the Dutch national remembrance of the war dead on 4 May and at the Liberation Day concert on 5 May.

The measures are being taken because of the panic that broke out last year during the ceremony on Dam Square attended by Queen Beatrix, when a man suddenly began to sceam. Around 60 people were injured and members of the royal family were rushed to safety.

The Remembrance Day ceremony is being labelled a national event and will be supervised by the National Counterterrorism Coordinator.

First aiders will be easier to recognise and police will have extra powers to remove people if they feel it is necessary. People living on the square will be ordered not to venture onto their balconies or roofs to watch the two minutes of silence and doors and windows will remain closed as they do every year.

The man who was arrested last year for causing the disturbance, the so-called Dam-screamer is being kept in custody until after 4 May, after he was arrested for shop lifting at the end of March.

On the Museum Square where live concerts will be held to mark Liberation Day, residents will also be banned from standing on their balconies and roof terraces.

In spite of the extra measures, Amsterdam Mayor Eberhard van der Laan stressed the events will retain their open character.

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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