Brussels protest
© Nicolas Maeteerlinck/Belga/AFP/Getty ImagesBrussels Protest
A rally against COVID restrictions in Brussels attracted thousands of participants on Sunday, many of whom called for Belgium's government to repeal the country's various COVID cert requirements.

"Samen voor Vrijheid" ('Together for Freedom'), the organisation behind the rally, had called on "anyone who senses that something is not right" to attend the protest.

According to a report by the Brussels Times, police put the number of attendees at the rally at around 5,000, though organisers reportedly cited a larger figure of 25,000.

Romanian MEP Cristian Terheș, who spoke to those gathered at the event, told Breitbart London that protesters had gathered in order to oppose legislation in place across Europe. He told Breitbart London:
"I spoke to a large, peaceful crowd in Brussels zealously committed to bodily autonomy and personal freedom, and who clearly want an end to draconian and irrational lockdown measures imposed by corrupt and power hunger governments all across Europe."
Terheș went on to criticise a previous call by the European Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen, for discussions regarding the possibility of mandatory vaccination across the bloc, a suggested decried at the time as the "Chinafication of Europe".

Terheș told this publication:
"The call from European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen for a discussion on mandatory vaccination shows that the EU is led by extremists and dangerous enemies of freedom and human rights. The power-hungry bureaucrats of the EU have now turned against personal freedom on medical matters as well as the democratic independence of national sovereign states. The good news is that the Europeans are waking up and are opposing the eurocrats on both counts."
While previous protests in Belgium had resulted in violent scenes, organisers of Sunday's rally worked closely with the police to ensure a peaceful gathering.

Many protesters on the day marched in opposition to restrictions currently in place in Belgium which require all those looking to enter bars, restaurants and cultural events to show a COVID cert proving vaccination, recovery, or that the person has tested negative for the Chinese Coronavirus.

Further restrictions had also been in place ordering the closure of cinemas, theatres, concert halls and other cultural centres to close from December 26th. However, these restrictions were reversed after it resulted in a significant uproar, with many in the sector ignoring the order entirely, while others took to the streets, lambasting the measures as irrational.

The U-turn on these latter measures resulted in the government being criticised for a lack of leadership, with one political analyst describing it as a "political cacophony".

Despite the past track record of protests in the country, the Belgian Prime Minister, Alexander De Croo, derided protesters on Sunday.

While the PM did acknowledge that people did have a right to protest, should they wish to do so, he went on to say that "if everyone behaved the way [the protesters] wanted, we would have been in lockdown for months and we would not have had a life", according to Brussels Times.