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Brussels is preparing for an illegal festival amid fears of violence

BRUSSELS (AP) – Prosecutors in Brussels have warned potential party members to stay away from an unsanctioned rally in one of the city’s largest parks this weekend as police arrested one of the organizers on Tuesday.

Thousands flocked to Brussels ‘Bois de la Cambre after the April Fools’ Day, which ended with clashes with police last month, and the sequel was advertised by a group called Abyss on Saturday in the same park.

In a statement issued Tuesday, prosecutors said the manager of the group’s Facebook page had been arrested and questioned before being released as part of an investigation.

The organizers, who in vain asked the Belgian Interior Ministry to allow them to organize the event, expressed their “surprise” at the arrest, which took place while Belgium was still fighting the coronavirus.

The country of 11.5 million people has been hit hard by the COVID-19 epidemic, with more than 976,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus and more than 24,000 viral deaths. Earlier this month, city officials said there was only one bed left in the intensive care unit of Brussels when a fire broke out in the working-class Anderlecht district due to the catastrophic severity of the hospital system.

“I am ready to listen to the requests of people who want to organize events, but this is not the time,” said Brussels Mayor Philip Close. “We need to hear what is happening in our hospitals. The situation remains dire. “

In April, the Belgian police and a crowd of 2000 people around the dense collisions caused several injuries in the Bois de La Cambre-. The violence erupted after police gathered to disperse late in the day, and cleaners hurled bottles and other shells at police, who sprayed cars and used tear gas to disperse the crowd.

To avoid a recurrence of the incidents, the Belgian police contacted Facebook to find out how they reduced the promotion of the Saturday party from the social network, according to local media. At the same time, the Brussels Prosecutor’s Office stated that anyone who violates the COVID-19 restrictions could be prosecuted.

Amid growing dissatisfaction with the government’s coronavirus measures, some French-speaking cafés and restaurant owners in the Walloon region have also planned to ignore the restrictions and reopen their terraces on Saturday, a week before the reopening date. ,

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