The Graslei in Ghent on Saturday night

Revellers explore the new limits to our liberties in Antwerp and Ghent

Like in many towns across Flanders it was a busy evening on terraces of pavement cafés in Antwerp and Ghent.  People remained good humoured as hospitality closed at 10PM in line with corona restrictions, but many decided not to go straight home.

In Antwerp police had to intervene on several occasions during the night because people were not complying with the ban on gatherings of more than 3 people after midnight. 

Using colourful language an Antwerp police officer explained: “The closure of terraces proceeded in a relatively good atmosphere. We had to douse a number of fires later on due to people who had had too much to drink.  It led to several brawls downtown.”

In Ghent it remained particularly busy on the Graslei and Korenlei until well past midnight.  Hundreds of youngsters had gathered by the water enjoying a mild evening.  There was no exuberant partying but people remained in groups of twenties with no physical distancing and few masks.

Around midnight thirty an incident escalated when a man, worse for wear and who was not masked, acted out his aggression.  He refused to produce any identification and police then decided to handcuff him.

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