Tractors banned from farmer protests in Groningen

Photo: Molly Quell
A tractor at an earlier protest in The Hague. Photo: Molly Quell

Farmers will not be allowed to use tractors at demonstrations in Groningen this week, a court has ruled.

The Noord Nederland court found that tractors have caused dangerous situations, for example causing damage at the Eelde airport. However, the Farmers Defence Force, which had gone to court, is allowed to continue to demonstrate.

According to the NOS, Mark van den Oever of the group told the court that tractors had a symbolic value for farmers. ‘It’s like taking the rainbow away from homosexual groups,’ he reportedly said.

The regional safety organisation had imposed a ban on tractor demonstrations until next Monday, claiming the farmers were deliberately threatening public order and ignoring traffic rules.

Yesterday, 63 people were arrested at a farmers’ protest in Wijster in Drenthe, including seven under-18s. Environment minister Carola Schouten also abandoned a work trip to Zeeland because farmers had blocked the road.

The protestors disagree with farming restrictions imposed by the Dutch government, which are part of a broad package of measures to cap levels of dangerous nitrogen-related emissions in the environment.

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