Taser used on protester, as police say Kurdish march organisers refused to obey safety instructions

Police smashed the window of a car and tased someone after they say protesters refused to follow orders about safety.

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Police at a pro-Kurdish / anti-Turkey rally in Helsinki, 20th October 2019 / Credit: Jiri Sironen Twitter

Helsinki Police say they had to resort to using force during a demonstration in the capital, with officers smashing a car window to stop the vehicle joining a parade of marchers.

The incident took place during a pro-Kurdish, anti-Turkey march in Helsinki on Saturday afternoon with a march leaving from Narinkkatori in Kamppi, to nearby Kansalaistori.

Police say that a vehicle tried to lead that march, despite being told this was not allowed for safety reasons. Police say protest organisers refused to follow their instructions to leave the car behind.

Officers had to smash a window of the car to force it to stop, and when several protesters tried to block a police car one of them was hit with a taser.

After that, police say the 300 people involved in the march continued peacefully through city streets in a circular route that brought them back round to Kansalaistori.

Helsinki Police have been criticised by several people who attended the march, complaining that for an anti-war protest, officers had taken an overly aggressive security posture.