German police, Berlin
German police, BerlinChen Leopold/Flash 90

Police in Berlin said on Sunday they had temporarily detained a total of 69 people at pro-Palestinian Arab protests involving several hundred demonstrators a day earlier, the dpa news agency reported.

They are being investigated for serious breach of the peace, grievous bodily harm and incitement to hatred, according to the report. Four police officers were injured at the protests.

According to the police, a demonstration entitled “Stop the Gaza Genocide” on Saturday afternoon was the largest gathering of the day, with a peak of 1,800 participants. It was also the scene of the most incidents, they said.

Bottles and pyrotechnics were thrown during the rally, the police said. A counter-rally took place under the motto “Against all antisemitism.” During the protest, a group of people moved towards the counter-protesters.

Police say they responded to this by pushing and shoving protesters.

Berlin authorities have taken a tough line against anti-Israeli demonstrations, which have been on the rise since Hamas’ October 7 attack on Israel.

These protests included a protest at the Humboldt University’s Institute for Social Sciences in downtown Berlin, similar to the anti-Israel campus protests that have swept across the US in recent months.

In addition to the protests, the number of antisemitic crimes in Germany has risen sharply since October 7.

In one incident, a synagogue in the German capital of Berlin was firebombed by two assailants. The incident is being investigated as a hate crime.

In late October, police in the western German city of Essen arrested a man who plotted to attack a pro-Israel demonstration.