Protests in Finland, Sweden against coronavirus measures

WION Web Team
New Delhi Published: May 02, 2021, 01:29 AM(IST)

Police officers remove people as they gather in central Stockholm to protest against the country's Covid-19 restrictions on May 1, 2021. Photograph:( AFP )

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Both countries have seen relatively low levels of infections

Hundreds marched in capitals of Finland and Sweden on Saturday to protest measures taken by the respective governments to stop the spread of coronavirus.

A protest in Helsinki drew 300 participants and resulted in about 50 arrests, as per tweet by Finnish police. Organisers of the event had announced that there would only be 6 participants.

Those arrested for failing to obey police orders were fined, and the crowd was otherwise dispersed by police without major incident. 

Finland has one of Europe's lowest infection rates, though a rise in cases in mid-February led to new restrictions, such as restaurant closures.

In Stockholm, 500 to 600 people marched with banners demanding "freedom and truth". The event lasted for more than two hours.

Unlike other European countries, Sweden opted for months not to impose strict measures on its population at the start of the pandemic, issuing guidance in the form of recommendations instead.

In November, however, facing a significant second wave of infections, Sweden capped public gatherings at eight participants and forced cafes, bars and restaurants to close at 8:30 p.m.

(With inputs from agencies)

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