Peaceful Kiwi protesters calmly put back up barricades after knocking them down during rally against Covid vaccine mandates
- Anti-vaxxer protesters in Wellington politely put back up knocked-down barriers
- Authorities set up ring of steel around country’s parliament building on Tuesday
- One protester filmed knocking down barricade as he gestured angrily at police
- Work was undone though by three other protesters who quickly put it back up
- Came as thousands rallied against Covid vaccination mandates on city’s streets
Hilarious footage captured the moment peaceful anti-vaxxer demonstrators politely put back up metal barriers after they were knocked down by another protester.
Authorities in New Zealand’s capital Wellington set up a ring of steel around the country’s parliament on Tuesday as thousands of unmasked protesters rallied against Covid vaccination mandates.
One protester was filmed knocking down a barricade as he gestured angrily at security guards blocking access to the parliament building.
The man followed his act of civil defiance by shouting ‘f**k you’ at officers, but saw his work quickly undone by three other protesters who put the metal barrier back up again.
Police were out in force for the Freedom and Rights Coalition protest in Wellington, New Zealand on Tuesday
Police had blocked off all but two entrances to the country’s parliament building – known colloquially as the Beehive – as protesters marched through Wellington’s CBD.
Demonstrators held messages such as ‘Kiwis are not lab rats’ and ‘coercion is not consent’ as they called for an end to compulsory vaccination orders and continuing social distancing restrictions.
Placards showing support to former US President Donald Trump and slamming the media as ‘fake’ and lying were also displayed.
‘I will not be coerced and I will not be forced into taking something I don’t want in my body,’ one protester said outside parliament.
‘I’m asking (the government) to give us back 2018. Simple as that. I want my freedoms back.’
New Zealand has struggled to fight off a highly infectious outbreak of the Delta variant this year, forcing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern to move from a strategy of elimination through lockdowns to living with the virus with higher vaccinations.
One protester metal barrier knocked down a metal barrier at the protest, but it was quickly put up again by a group of polite demonstrators
Ardern last month said the country would require teachers and workers in the health and disability sectors to be fully vaccinated against Covid, inviting criticism from people calling for more freedoms and for ending mandatory vaccine requirements.
‘Treat us like people!’ another protester exclaimed when asked about the government’s stance on mandating the vaccine.
‘I’m here for freedom. The government, what they’re doing, is anti-freedom.’
Speaking to reporters inside parliament, Ardern said: ‘What we saw today was not representative of the vast bulk of New Zealanders.’
A group of anti-vaxxers were seen performing a traditional haka during the Freedom and Rights Coalition protest in Wellington
This protestor felt forced vaccines were a form of modern day fascism in New Zealand
The protest was described as peaceful, with many protesters marching through central Wellington and congregating outside parliament
But the prime minister has been facing growing political pressure and public protests to ease pandemic measures ahead of the Christmas holidays.
She plans to travel to Auckland on Wednesday when the lockdown measures enforced on the city nearly three months ago eases. She is expected to face more protests during her visit.
New Zealand still has among the lowest Covid-19 cases in the world with under 8,000 cases reported so far and 32 deaths.
It reported 125 new cases on Tuesday and its total double-dose vaccination rate had reached nearly 80 per cent of its eligible population.
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