Police arrested Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg and other demonstrators on Tuesday as they protested the expansion of a coal mine in western Germany, according to a police source.
“The group is in custody,” a police spokeswoman told AFP, adding that the anti-coal activists had gone “to the edge of the mine”.
In the photos, Greta Thunberg, dressed in black, is shown being detained by the police and then taken away by them as part of her evacuation.
“Once control is over, we will decide the fate of these people,” a police source added.
The Swedish activist has been in Germany for several days supporting opponents of the expansion of the country’s largest open pit mine, in the Rhine basin, which will soon engulf an abandoned village called Lützerath.
Occupied by climate advocates who wanted to prevent its destruction, this small village was evacuated by the police, who removed several hundred people who took refuge in abandoned trees and farms.
And although the police operation, which lasted for several days, was over, the opponents did not give up. They organized a demonstration on Saturday that drew more than 15,000 participants from all over Germany. The scuffles left scores of injured protesters and police.
Protests continued on Tuesday with railway lines occupied and roads and buildings blocked, especially in western Germany.
The lignite mine, which belongs to the German energy group RWE, is located between Cologne and Dusseldorf. Its extension, which is planned for several years, is considered essential for Germany’s energy security, which must compensate for the disruption of Russian gas deliveries.
Activists believe that current reserves of lignite are sufficient and denounce Germany’s serious abandonment of its climate commitments.
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