Helsinki’s EuroMayDay rally most violent yet

some riot policeThis May Day ranked among the bloodiest in the history of Helsinki according to Finnish Police reports noted in the Finnish News Agency (STT).

Local police are still investigating ten serious violent crimes which occurred in the capital on Wednesday and Thursday.

Inspector Jari Koski from the Helsinki police said about the violence: “It is a wonder that nobody died.”

Among the ten violent incidents over the two day period were several knifings as well as an incident in which a man was stabbed in the neck with a used syringe.

May Day was celebrated on Wednesday night and Thursday with gatherings of tens of thousands of people in downtown Helsinki.

According to those who were present at the EuroMayDay rally on Wednesday night, police were aggressively provoking those present – particularly the organisers.

According to one of the media spokespeople for the event, Dan Koivusalo, the police caused problems before the bottles starting flying.

“I think it is incomprehensible that the police stopped a well run demonstration and the first people they detained were those responsible for keeping order,” Mr Koivusalo said.

Helsinki police officer Inspector Petri Juvonen told the STT that ten people were arrested for fighting the police during the May Day eve rally.

“Mainly there was bottle throwing. I am not sure if all of it was in connection with the demonstration,” Inspector Juvonen said. He didn’t comment on any injuries among the police force.

Police arrested 27 demonstrators at the EuroMayDay rally but they were all released on Thursday. Police estimate that 500 people took part in the rallies.