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The police arrested Greta Thunberg during an eco-protest in a German village World News

Greta Thunberg was arrested by the police during a demonstration in Germany.

Environmental activist, 20, participates in protests against the demolition of the village of Luetzerath.

A tiny hamlet, which became the front line of the German climate debate, is being cleared to make way for the expansion of a nearby coal mine.

Police say it’s the second time the Swedish activist, who joined the protests on Saturdaythe police moved this week in Luetzerath.

A spokesman for the local police in Aachen said Ms Thunberg was part of a group of protesters who “charged” towards the edge of the surface mine, which officers described as “steep and extremely dangerous”.

Police officers detained climate activist Greta Thunberg on a day of protest against the expansion of the open-pit Garzweiler lignite mine of the German company RVE in Luetzerath
Police officers detain climate activist Greta Thunberg on a day of protests against the expansion of German company RVE's opencast Garzweiler lignite mine in Luetzerath, Germany, January 17, 2023, highlighting tensions over Germany's climate policy during the energy crisis.  REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattai

The police say that the activist was not arrested, but was taken away and is now with the other protesters for identification.

The small hamlet of Luetzerath, in North Rhine-Westphalia, is owned by utility company RVE and was vacated before demolition to allow for the expansion of nearby Garzweiler coal my.

Ministers and RVE say that lignite – the form of coal that activists consider the most harmful to health – dug from the mine will provide Germanyenergy security in the short term.

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Why did the protesters gather in the abandoned village of Luzerath?

The government, which is a three-party coalition, including the country’s Green Party, has had to adjust its attitude towards the use of coal. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The country has historically relied heavily on Russian gas for its energy, but shipments to Europe have been reduced in response to European sanctions.

However, the government insists it remains committed to eliminating coal use in the long term.

She pledged to outline plans to phase out coal in eight years by 2030 in North Rhine-Westphalia, the state where Garzweiler is based.

A police officer escorts climate activist Greta Thunberg out of the area on a day of protests against the expansion of German company RVE's Garzweiler opencast lignite mine in Luetzerath
Climate activist Greta Thunberg gestures as she sits on a bus on a day of protests against the expansion of German company RVE's Garzweiler opencast lignite mine in Luetzerath

Environmental activists want Germany to take immediate action on fossil fuels and oppose the expansion of coal mines.

They say bulldozing the village to make way for the site would result in massive amounts of greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels being mined.

More details:
Greta Thunberg joins the Luetzerath protests
Explanation: Why will Luetzerath be removed from the map?

Demonstrators moved into the abandoned houses of former residents two years ago.

The group LuetziBleibt – which translates as Luetzi remains – claimed earlier this month that there were “around several hundred people” in the village.

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Police in riot gear moved into the village earlier this month in an attempt to drive out protesters.

Since then, roadblocks have been removed, tree houses built by protesters have been cut down, and buildings bulldozed.

Ms Thunberg joined protesters on Saturday in an impassioned speech in which she said Germany was “embarrassing itself right now”.

Police in riot gear clashed with protesters trying to enter the Garczeiller mine
The painting:
Police in riot gear clashed with protesters trying to enter the Garczeiller mine

“The science is clear: we need to keep carbon in the ground,” she said.

Police said it could take weeks to resolve the impasse over the coal mine expansion, which activists see as
a symbol of Berlin’s failed climate policy amid the energy crisis in Europe’s largest economy.

Regional and national governments reached an agreement with RVE last year that allows it to destroy the abandoned village in exchange for ending coal use by 2030, rather than 2038.

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