Today, huge crowds marched through Brussels demanding an end to Belgium’s harsh Covid laws. An Omicron “tsunami” has resulted in more than 60 000 infections per day. 

In a demonstration that was larger than any previous, the crowd of people marched through Brussels.

There have been many previous demonstrations in Brussels that saw violence and clashes against the police.

On January 9, demonstrators marched through Brussels holding banners, chanting freedom and liberty!  

Today was no exception, as demonstrators held signs calling out Alexander De Croo (Belgian Prime Minister) and Covid Safe Pass.

Covid Safe passes are required to enter many venues. They prove that the citizens have been vaccinated, or they have had a negative test.  Today’s demonstration saw police use tear gas, water canon and pepper spray to disperse protesters. 

Pictured: Police confront protesters at today's huge demonstration against coronavirus restrictions in Brussels, Belgium

Pictured: Protesters confront police at the massive demonstration today against restrictions on coronavirus in Brussels, Belgium

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM: Massive crowds clutch signs slamming Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo and the Covid Safe Pass which proves that citizens are vaccinated or have tested negative and is required for entry into numerous venues

BRUSSELS – BELGIUM: Huge protestors hold up signs slamming Alexander De Croo (Belgian Prime Minister) and Covid Safe Pass, which shows that citizens have either been vaccinated or tested negative. This pass is needed to gain entry to many places 

Pictured: A protester clad in a skeleton costume holds a sign saying 'Where is my freedom?' as thousands of demonstrators descended on Brussels today for a protest against coronavirus restrictions

Pictured is a protester wearing a skeleton suit holding a sign asking for his freedom. Today saw thousands descend on Brussels to protest the coronavirus restrictions.

Organisers of the demonstration, The World Wide Demonstration for Freedom (and Europeans United for Freedom), had asked for participants from all EU countries.

The crowd was adorned with flags representing Romania, Poland and the Netherlands. 

Francesca Fanara, a traveler from Lille in France to meet AFP, stated that “What has happened since 2020 has enabled people to wake-up to corruption.”

Adolfo Barbosa also said that: “It is a health dictatorship.” This is a warm place to be. 

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM: One protester wore an iceberg costume with 'We are the tip of the iceberg' written on it and perched the character Olaf from Frozen on the top of their outfit, as they attended today's mass anti-Covid restrictions protest today

BRUSSELS BELGIUM: A protester wore an iceberg dress with the message ‘We Are the Tip of the Iceberg’ printed on it. They also wore the Olaf character from Frozen as a top on their costume, at today’s anti-Covid restriction protest.

The organisers of the protest The World Wide Demonstration for Freedom and Europeans United for Freedom, had called for people to come from other EU states so there were flags from the Netherlands, Poland and Romania in the crowd as it weaved through the streets of Brussels (pictured)

The organisers of the protest The World Wide Demonstration for Freedom and Europeans United for Freedom, had called for people to come from other EU states so there were flags from the Netherlands, Poland and Romania in the crowd as it weaved through the streets of Brussels (pictured)

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM: Riot police detain a protester during clashes on the sidelines of the protest against European anti-coronavirus measures today

BRUSSELS (BELGIUM): A protester is detained by riot police during today’s demonstration against European anti-coronavirus policies

Belgium saw an increase in daily infections to more than 60,000 over the last week, but it is now under control of a milder strain and a high vaccine rate. 

On Friday, the Prime Minister De Croo spoke at a press conference and stated:[The Omicron variant]It lives up to its name. This is not a tsunami, it’s a tsunami. 

However, he stated that Omicron was making people sicker. First, because there are more Belgians being vaccinated and infected.

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM: Police set off a water cannon against protesters during today's demonstration against COVID-19 measures

BRUSSELS (BELGIUM): Today’s protest against COVID-19 was a violent one. Police used a water gun to disperse the crowd.

During the conference, he announced that bars and restaurants could be open later but that nightclubs would still remain closed.   

According to Politico Europe, he also stated that the country will be introducing a coronavirus “barometer” which will go into effect next Friday in order to measure the severity of the pandemic.

Belgian authorities will use the barometer to color-code it and link coronavirus restrictions and hospitalization number limits to ICU capacity.  

Police officers stand guard as protesters hold banners during the demonstration against the Belgian government's restrictions imposed to contain the spread of coronavirus in Brussels, Belgium today

As protestors hold banners, police officers are on guard. They were protesting the restrictions the Belgian government imposed today to stop the spread coronavirus from Brussels.

Code Red is an acronym that’s used to indicate severe threats to the health system. This code refers to more than 500 ICU bed occupancy and 150 daily hospital admissions.

Code Orange can be used to indicate that the system has been under severe pressure. Code Orange allows for hospitalisations of 65-149 and ICU beds occupancy of 300-500.

Code Yellow refers to hospitals with less strain. It means that they have fewer than 65 per-day hospitalisations, and ICU bed occupancy of fewer then 300.  

De Croo stated that while the barometer would help decision makers, it is the Consultative Committee who decides what code level a country falls in and the measures or restrictions they will need to take.   

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM: A protester holds a banner with the words 'STOP DE CORONA DICTATUUR' written on it (Stop the Corona Dictator) at today's demonstration

BRUSSELS BELGIUM: Protester holding a banner bearing the words STOP DE CORONA DICTATUUR’ (Stop the Corona Dictator).

Balloons, banners and flags were hoisted in the air by huge groups of demonstrators who took to the streets of Brussels to denounce coronavirus restrictions in Belgium today (pictured)

Massive groups of protestors took to the streets to condemn the coronavirus restrictions being placed in Belgium.

Belgian riot police stand behind a barbed wire blockade today as a demonstrator dressed as Jesus clutches a crucifix which says: 'The truth: We're being lied to!'

Belgian riot officers stand behind a wire barbed fence blockade today while a man dressed in Jesus grabs a cross which reads: “The truth: We are being lied to!” 

One protester holds a sign alluding to George Orwell's 1984 at the large-scale demonstration in Brussels today

A sign referring to George Orwell’s 1984 was held by one protestor at today’s large-scale demonstration in Brussels

Further developments were announced Friday in Belgium. Public venues like cultural centers can hold up to 200 people with their health passes, while sport stadiums are allowed to host events outdoors. A booster jab will be required starting March 1 for those who have had their last dose over five months. 

According to Belgium’s national health institute, the country reported an increase in hospital admissions and COVID-19-related cases in January.

More than 30000 daily cases were reported between January 11-17 and January 17, with 255 hospitalisations per day between January 14-20.  

And  Belgium’s latest coronavirus protest comes as some governments seek to ease restrictions despite the fast-spreading Omicron variant causing a surge in infections. 

Omicron was declared the predominant variant in circulation by the EU’s Health Agency on Friday.

France will start a gradual lifting off of Covid restrictions on February 2. This is after the authorities stated that there were “encouraging indications” that Omicron was ending the Omicron wave of infection.