Greta Thunberg was seen smiling as she was carried away by riot police for the second time in three days today as she protested outside a coal mine in Germany today.
The 20-year-old was one of dozens of climate activists who were arrested by police officers during protests at a mine in the coal village of Lutzerath in North Rhine-Westphalia.
Activists protesting the ongoing demolition of the village to make way for a coal mine expansion clashed with riot police today.
Thunberg was pictured smiling as she was carried away by three police officers, all wearing riot gear.
Greta Thunberg was seen smiling as she was carried away by riot police for the second time in three days today as she protested outside a coal mine in Germany today
Today, police officers lead the Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg away from the edge of the Garzweiler II opencast lignite mine
Climate activist Greta Thunberg gestures as she sits on a bus on the day of protests against the expansion of German energy supplier RWE’s Garzweiler opencast lignite mine to Luetzerath in Germany
Thunberg, who joined the demonstrators on Friday, was alone in a large police bus after his arrest on Tuesday afternoon.
It comes after Thunberg was physically removed from the same location by police on Sunday following protests.
Today police said Thunberg was part of a group of activists who ran towards the ledge of the Garzweiler opencast mine. The activists stood at the edge of the mine, which has a sharp cliff face, before colliding with the police.
Police said it was dangerous and people were forbidden to stay there.
Thunberg was one of several protesters carried away by police from the edge of the mine in the afternoon.
A demonstrator was able to enter the mine, said RWE and called the step “very inconsiderate”, reported dpa.
Police officers carry Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg away from the edge of the Garzweiler II opencast brown coal mine during today’s protests
Police arrested climate activist Greta Thunberg on Tuesday during protests at a mine in Lützerath
Police arrested climate activist Greta Thunberg during protests on Tuesday
“Greta Thunberg was part of a group of activists who ran towards the ledge,” said a spokesman for the Aachen police.
“But then we stopped and carried her with this group out of the immediate danger area for identity verification.”
It was not yet clear what would happen to Thunberg or the group she was held with, or if the activist who jumped into the mine was injured, the spokesman said.
The German news channel n-tv previously showed Thunberg in a group of demonstrators surrounded by several police officers.
“We will use force to take you to the identity check, so please cooperate,” a police officer told the group of activists, according to Portal footage.
On January 11, the police and the energy company RWE began clearing demonstrators from Lützerath, removing roadblocks, tearing down tree houses and bulldozing buildings.
Activists have been referring to the symbolic meaning of Lützerath for years. Thousands of people demonstrated on Saturday against the demolition of the village by RWE to expand the Garzweiler colliery.
Thunberg is pictured among a group of protesters surrounded by several police officers
Police intervene in the protest as activists march and sit on rails to block the path for coal trains heading to the Lutzerath power station on Tuesday
Activists sit on tracks to block coal trains from the power plant in Lutzerath on Tuesday
Thunberg said on Friday that Germany was “embarrassing itself” with the expansion of the mine. DW News reports.
“I find it absolutely absurd that this is happening in 2023,” she said.
“The most effective people are clear, the science is clear, we need to keep the carbon in the ground.
“When governments and corporations act like this, actively destroying the environment and putting countless people at risk, people step up.
“This is just part of a global climate movement and we stand together in solidarity.”
Protesters have accused police of “sheer violence” while authorities say 70 police officers have been injured in recent days.
Police say they are investigating 154 potential crimes, while nine eco-activists were hospitalized, although none were seriously injured – a claim disputed by climate protesters, who say several were seriously injured.
The police response has at times turned into absurd scenes, with videos on social media showing officers in riot gear getting stuck in thick mud while protesters pelt dirt at them.
A video filmed on Sunday appears to show a man dressed as a monk taunting the stuck police officers and even knocking one over as they try to get out of the mud.
The mine with the name Garzweiler is one of the largest opencast mines in Europe and is operated by the energy company RWE. It is an important source of lignite used in coal-fired power plants.
The federal government had announced plans to phase out coal by 2030, but has since changed course after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine forced it to reconsider its energy policies.