Bizarre Images of New Zealand Protesters With Trump Gear Evoke Capitol Riot

The protests had nothing to do with America, yet the crowd carried anti-Biden signs and pro-Trump flags.
November 9, 2021, 7:13am
wellington protests
A protester wears a Donald Trump face mask during a protest at Parliament on November 09, 2021 in Wellington, New Zealand. Protesters gathered outside parliament calling for an end to Covid restrictions and vaccine mandates in New Zealand. Photo by Hagen Hopkins via Getty Image

Thousands of anti-vaccine mandate protestors gathered in New Zealand’s capital of Wellington on Tuesday, Nov. 9, blocking roads and rallying outside of the country’s Parliament to denounce state-enforced COVID-19 vaccination requirements and government lockdowns.

While it was a mostly peaceful protest, bizarre images from ground showed protesters wearing Donald Trump masks and waving Trump flags. Still others carried “Let’s Go Brandon” signs, an anti-Biden political slogan. Patched Mongrel Mob and other gang members were also part of the crowd, according to Stuff.

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Despite the protest not having anything to do with America, the scene invoked the image of the January 6 attack on the United States Capitol, which saw thousands of Trump supporters storm the building to protest President Joe Biden’s election.

Disturbing reports of violence and threats emerged throughout the day, as a cameraman was allegedly grabbed and pushed by protesters in Wellington, who yelled anti-media abuse, and a police officer was allegedly bitten by a protester in Auckland. One New Zealander posted a photo on Twitter of tennis balls that they alleged were thrown onto Parliament – the words “Hang Ardern” scrawled on them in black marker.

The Parliament crowd consisted of an estimated 3,000 people, the majority of whom were brandishing signs and shouting slogans opposing vaccine mandates announced by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern last month. Those mandates stipulated that teachers and health workers need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and that 90 percent of the population needs to be inoculated before restrictions will end – a higher threshold than in most other countries. 

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Rallies condemning the laws, and COVID restrictions in general, also took place in other parts of New Zealand, including Auckland and Invercargill.

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The protests followed an announcement by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern that teachers and health workers need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and that 90 percent of the population needs to be inoculated before restrictions will end. Photo by Hagen Hopkins via Getty Images

Many protesters called for freedom and demanded that the mandates be wound back. By late morning all the gates and entrance ways to Parliament were shut off, in what House Speaker Trevor Mallard said was the biggest increase in parliamentary security he had seen since his election in 1984. By mid-afternoon, the protests had wound down to just 100 people outside Parliament. 

Addressing the media on Tuesday afternoon, Ardern said, “What we saw today was not representative of the vast bulk of New Zealanders.”

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The majority of protesters were voicing their disapproval of New Zealand's COVID lockdowns and vaccine mandates. Photo by Hagen Hopkins via Getty Images

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Among the anti-government placards were pro-Trump flags. Photo by Hagen Hopkins via Getty Images

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Some carried “Let’s Go Brandon” signs, an anti-Biden political slogan. Photo by Hagen Hopkins via Getty Images