Country Risk

Turkish-Kurdish violence in Antwerp indicates elevated risk of similar confrontations in Belgian, Dutch, and German cities

31 October 2017


On 30 October, the mayor of Antwerp imposed a week-long ban on public gatherings in the southern neighbourhood of Brederodestraat.

The decision followed rioting at the weekend of 27–29 October between individuals from local Turkish and Kurdish communities. Violence first broke out on the night of 27 October, when a bus of Kurdish Partiya Karkerên Kurdistan (PKK) supporters on their way to a rally drove through a neighbourhood densely populated with Turkish migrants. A street fight between the two groups followed, involving an estimated 200–300 people using sticks, stones, and other objects. After a police mediation team proved unsuccessful, riot police were deployed to the area, making a total of 47 arrests.

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