THE Hague, Netherlands – Dutch police on Saturday disrupted a rave party in violation of COVID-19 rules attended by hundreds at an abandoned factory, local media reported.
Dozens of police entered the makeshift place in the central town of Rijswijk and hundreds more rallied to drive people away, NOS television said.
Several revelers were arrested but there was no violence, according to local broadcaster Omroep Gelderland.
The illegal rave drew people from all over, with locals claiming to have seen vehicles arriving from France and Germany, but also from as far away as Spain and Italy.
“It’s an illegal party so it’s forbidden,” tweeted local mayor Josan Meijers.
“This is not appropriate at the time of the coronavirus crisis. The (health) measures apply to everyone,” Meijers added.
With an increase in virus cases amid the rise of the Omicron COVID-19, the Netherlands imposed a new round of restrictions a week before Christmas with all non-essential bars and shops closed until January 14.
With the exception of funerals, only two people are allowed to congregate outside different households until then.
Despite a nationwide New Year’s fireworks ban, a number have taken place regardless, with one 12-year-old being killed and another seriously injured in an accident at an event.
In France, police have moved to book revelers to attend an illegal rave that drew some 1,500 overnight in the small east-central town of Saint-Florentin, about a two-hour drive from Paris.
A local prefecture source said police had secured the site and were carrying out drug tests, adding that the local prosecutor’s office was investigating.
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