Thousands gathered in the capital Berlin on Sunday, October 25, to denounce coronavirus disease (COVID-19) restrictions. Reports indicate that hundreds of police officers were deployed in Berlin to oversee the demonstration. Berlin police stated that protesters failed to comply with social distancing measures and were forced to break up the protest, although no clashes were reported.
Separately, police are investigating an alleged arson incident that occurred on Sunday in the capital whereby unknown assailants targeted a building belonging to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for disease control, located on General-Pape-Strasse in the Tempelhof neighborhood. Incendiary devices were reportedly used in the attack, which caused a small fire and material damages but no injuries. It was not immediately clear whether the incident was related to COVID-19 protests.
Similar demonstrations are to be anticipated over the coming days and weeks. A heightened security presence is to be expected in the vicinity of any demonstration. Localized travel disruptions should also be anticipated.
Those in Berlin are advised to monitor developments to the situation, avoid all demonstrations and political gatherings as a precaution, and adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities.