In view of the many road blockades by the climate protection group Last Generation in Berlin, a debate has broken out again about the severity of the police operations. The Last Generation and supporters online complained about painful police grips and techniques when carrying or otherwise removing the blockers from intersections. The police, in turn, justified using physical force by referring to their legal rights.

Videos on the Internet and observations of police operations show how police officers bend one hand inward or press their head back on demonstrators who do not get up from the street even after many requests, apparently trying to get them to give in because of the pain. Some blockers then contort their faces in pain as they are carried or dragged away, others scream. The Last Generation writes about a corresponding video: “Daniel and Fynn are minors (16

Different reactions on the internet

The reactions on the Internet are very different. Some of the comments criticize the police. It says, for example: “Why this brutal harshness? There is no reason for it. I am horrified” or “Torture in the middle of Germany. Iranian conditions. Horrible”. And: “It is obvious that the mildest remedy was not chosen here.”

Numerous other people defend the police’s actions: “I wonder what it is that the young person actually has that he can’t walk with his own legs.” Or: “And because the criminals are minors, should the police continue to let them block traffic?” Another user writes: “This shouting is just silly, but minors can easily be manipulated for the cause.”

The police also say: “These techniques learned in police operational training pose less risk of injury to both sides than “carrying away” a person who is resisting/blocking themselves. They are therefore regularly the mildest, most suitable and necessary means.”