Saturday, June 8, 2019
Police in Full Riot Gear Block an Anti-Cruise Ship Rally from Entering Piazza San Marco, This Afternoon
Given the fact that there have been a few reported instances in the last year or two of a solitary painter (who was only painting, not displaying or trying to sell work) being told by local police to pack up his easel and vacate Piazza San Marco, there was little chance that what turned out to be thousands of demonstrators against the continued presence of cruise ships in the Venetian lagoon would be allowed to conclude their planned procession this afternoon in the city's most famous public space.
But that didn't stop the immense and very vocal crowd from trying.
Their march began late this afternoon near the San Basilio Cruise Terminal, at the western end of the Zattere, where an out-of-control 60-ton cruise ship rammed into a moored (and much smaller) river boat cruise ship last Sunday. Chanting and singing, the demonstators made their way through the city, then past the Giardini Reali to the molo, where they were met by a line of blue: scores of polizia and carabinieri in full riot gear arrayed shoulder-to-shoulder from the Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana, to the columns of San Teodoro and San Marco, and on to the Palazzo Ducale.
Prevented from entering Piazza San Marco, the rally calling for an end to all cruise ship traffic in the lagoon took place in front of the Palazzo Ducale, as you can see in the image above.
Venice's Questura (or police) estimated the crowd of demonstrators to be 5,000. Considering there are now less than 53,000 residents in Venice--25% of whom are elderly--that would be in itself a huge number. But I think that photographs and film taken along the path of the march will show that the actual number of participants was much larger. Perhaps much much larger. One news outlet puts the number of demonstrators at 8,000. Another has estimated 10,000.
I'll post more images tomorrow.
Subscribe to: Post Comments (Atom)
I'm so glad people came out in such numbers! The image of the police, though, is chilling.ReplyDelete
Yes, redpencilgirl, remembering the 2001 G-8Summit in Genoa, the police presence was a little unsettling: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/27th_G8_summitDelete
Thank you for the news. Excellent turnout.ReplyDelete
It was indeed an impressive turnout.Delete
Those monsters out of the lagoon NOW!ReplyDelete
Alas, I fear that the city, regional and national government will continue to issue misleading press releases suggesting the problem has been resolved while absolutely nothing in fact changes: the "monsters" will remain, and perhaps increase, and the so-called solutions to the problem (such as newly dredged deep-water channels) will simply increase acqua alta's severity, mass touristic crowding, and the city's already terrible air quality.Delete