Last Updated on July 6, 2022
Hundreds of Dutch farmers and citizens have converged on a police station in Leeuwarden where 16-year-old farmer, Jouke, is being held. The teenager is being accused of attempted manslaughter after Dutch police fired on his vehicle. Video from the scene shows the teen driving away from police.
🇳🇱 The Dutch police have fired shots at completely peaceful and unarmed farmers. This is why you don’t give up your guns; unarmed people don’t stand a change against tyranny. pic.twitter.com/K1UN5J1U0c
— Eva Vlaardingerbroek (@EvaVlaar) July 6, 2022
Farmers have been protesting since June 30, after the Dutch government announced draconian climate change measures that will cause dozens of cattle farms to close. Dutch provinces are being forced to slash emissions anywhere from 12 to 70 percent depending on the area.
The agricultural sector is being hit the hardest, with the Dutch government even admitting that there will be no way to fully compensate the farmers.
In response, protesters have been using tractors and other farm equipment to block highways, airports and food distribution centers. They have also sprayed manure on government buildings and riot police.
On Tuesday night, Dutch police fired on a tractor that was blocking a food distribution center in Heerenveen. Despite the fact that the tractor was driving in the opposite direction of officers who had weapons drawn, one of them opened fire anyway.
Police accused the driver, 16-year-old Jouke, of attempting to run down police officers. A bullet missed his head by centimeters, and he has since been accused of attempted manslaughter.
In response, hundreds of protesters have converged on a police station in Leeuwarden in order to demand his release. “Free Jouke” signs have also been sprouting up across the country.
Just now in the Netherlands 🇳🇱
Farmers and citizens turn out in mass in front of a local police department where they hold the 16-year-old boy Jouke shot at yesterday. They demand his release! pic.twitter.com/VChJrDubeo
— Humanbydesign (@Humanbydesign3) July 6, 2022
🇳🇱 Netherlands – Leeuwarden (Police-station) [Jul 6, 2022]
A large group of farmers have gathered at the police-station in Leeuwarden to Free Jouke (16 yo), who has been held captive. Yesterday Jouke was being shot by police, while he tried to drive away with his tractor. pic.twitter.com/x1OzeU9qkK
— PPCNEWS24 (@ppcnews24) July 6, 2022
The Farmers Defense Force (FDL) has called upon all available farmers and supporters to converge on Leeuwarden to demand the teenager’s release. He is currently being held in custody with two other farmers, with one being a 46-year-old man from Opsterland. The other is a 36-year-old man from Heerenveen, which is where Jouke also hails from.
The teenager’s family has reportedly owned a farm in the area for decades.
Dutch police have brought in tactical vehicles and riot police who are ready to converge on the protesters if need be. They have also warned against doxing the officers involved in the shooting. “There are messages that are very intimidating and threatening and in which personal data of the colleagues involved are shared. We call on everyone to stop this. This is punishable and is also known as doxxing,” the Fryslân police said in a statement.
The Public Prosecution Service is investigating whether to charge the trio with attempted manslaughter, the agency announced Wednesday.