Partiers protest Belgium virus rules; medics demand support

BRUSSELS (AP) — Thousands of protesters angry at pandemic-related restrictions marched to European Union headquarters in Brussels and had minor tussles with police over their unauthorized gathering. The crowd initially assembled in a Brussels park for a party designed to flout Belgium’s COVID-19 rules and a related gathering calling for Europeans to claim back their freedom. Participants then marched to the district of the Belgian capital that houses key EU buildings. Police officers blocked them and dispersed the marchers by early Saturday evening. Earlier Saturday, about 1,000 health care workers demonstrated at an authorized protest in Brussels to demand more financial support and hospital staff after a coronavirus-dominated year.