WorldClashes during the evacuation of a LafargeHolcim quarry

Clashes during the evacuation of a LafargeHolcim quarry

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Clashes on the ZAD du Mormont, at La Sarrazentre in Switzerland on March 30, 2021. – Jean-Christophe Bott / AP / SIPA

Clashes punctuated an operation to dismantle a Zone to Defend (ZAD) in Switzerland. Police on Tuesday evacuated environmental activists who had occupied a quarry belonging to the Franco-Swiss cement giant LafargeHolcim for months to protest against a plan to expand the site. Activists had set up a camp at the site in October.

A large number of police, many of whom were wearing riot gear, intervened early in the morning in the ZAD du Mormont, in La Sarraz, in the canton of Vaud in the west of the country, asking the activists to leave on pain of be evacuated by force. The evacuation of the surroundings of the camp proceeded peacefully, but when the police approached a farm in its center, some militants threw stones and firecrackers at them.

29 people arrested

The company and the municipality of La Sarraz had taken legal action to remove the environmentalists. The police operation took place after the exhaustion of all remedies available to them. “It’s a highly anxiety-provoking situation. But we want to hold out for as long as possible, ”a protester told ATS-Keystone news agency shortly before being evacuated by police. According to regional police, an officer was slightly injured.

On Tuesday evening, the police arrested 29 people, 12 of whom were taken into custody in nearby Lausanne. Several activists remained perched in trees or on the roof of the farm, chanting and chanting slogans against LafargeHolcim.

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