Scenes Seldom Seen: Geneva Police, Protesters Face Off During Bicentennial Celebration

GENEVA, Switzerland – A Geneva police parade quickly turned into an encounter between cops and protesters that left three people injured on Saturday 4 October in Plainpalais.

The Geneva cantonal police was celebrating its bicentennial with a costumed parade through the city center, when it encountered an unauthorized demonstration of about 300 persons picketing against “police  brutality.”

According to police records, the local law enforcement agency conducted over 100 “preventative controls” in Plainpalais seizing masks and paint bombs.

Demonstrators chanting “fascists” and “shame on you”, quickly gathered steam tagging walls, throwing rocks at the cops, attacking a TPG bus and burning tires in Place du Cirque; it turned into a scene seldom seen in Geneva.

Most of the events were captured and shared by several social media users.

The three-hour riot was a Dance Against the Police, because according to organizers, “the police kills, beats, discriminates and sickens” others.

Police claim they were attacked with tear gas by the crowd at the Rue des Bains, yet some demonstrators said police launched the attack first:

It is unclear if the demo was just against the Geneva police, or police in general, as the video which the organizers used to promote the picketing, mostly included shots of police brutality cases occurred in the US.

One person was hurt when an incendiary device hit him on the leg, two cops were hurt when they were attacked with rocks at the Rue Gourgas. None of the injuries are life threatening.

See a full pictorial description of what transpired during the march on the Tribune de Genève with pictures by Pierre Albouy as the one here left.

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