"A German-based conspiracy group helped to drive a series of anti-lockdown
protests across Australia which saw dozens of people arrested and hundreds
fined after violent clashes with police.
Police arrested more than 60 people and fined 107 more after a crowd of about
3,000 gathered in Sydney on Saturday to protest against the city’s lockdown.
Coordinated by a loose network of conspiracy-laced groups, including some with
links to the far right, rallies took place in cities across Australia and the
globe, with violent clashes between demonstrators and police in Sydney.
Protests against Covid restrictions have become common throughout the pandemic.
While billed as peaceful protests, police said they were surprised by “the
level of violence that people were prepared to use”.
Prior to Saturday, word of the protests was spread through a collection of
Telegram, Instagram and Facebook posts, often amplified by large
anti-vaccination and conspiracy pages that have amassed followings in the tens
of thousands during the pandemic.
Protesters marched through central Sydney on Saturday, in breach of coronavirus
The latest rallies have highlighted the role of a German-based group, named
Worldwide Demonstration, which has helped to coordinate protests across the
globe, including in various Australian cities.
The group has 45,000 Facebook followers and 70,000 Telegram subscribers on its
main accounts alone, and even more on dedicated accounts set up for individual
The group appears to be run out of Germany by individuals calling themselves
“Freie Bürger Kassel”, or the Free Citizens of Kassel. Its main Facebook page
is administered by two Germans and a third individual in the United Kingdom."
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics