Hundreds in Stockholm protest Sweden’s virus restrictions

STOCKHOLM (AP) — Swedish police on Saturday dispersed hundreds of people who had gathered in central Stockholm to protest coronavirus restrictions set by the Swedish government.

Swedish authorities said the demonstration — the first major protest against the country’s coronavirus restrictions — was illegal as it was held without permission.

Stockholm police said on their website they decided to cut short the gathering just after it started when the number of participants exceeded the limits for public gatherings under Sweden’s pandemic laws.

Video footage on Swedish media showed a sizable number without masks gathering in Medborgarplatsen square not far from the capital’s Old Town. Local media estimated 300 to 500 people attended.

Swedish tabloids Aftonbladet and Expressen reported that the demonstration was dispersed largely peacefully but six police officers were injured after scuffles broke out with some protesters who didn’t want to leave.