Thousands of people are protesting in the streets of Belgium on Wednesday objecting the arrival of Donald Trump.
“If you don’t want Trump in Belgium clap your hands,” some of the protestors chanted. “Hey hey, ho ho, Donald Trump has got to go,” other protestors said.
Belgians held colorful flags and banners carved with slogans like “Fight Donald Trump and his billionaire friends” and “stay out of our hole,” referring Trump’s interview last year where he said that Brussels is “like living in a hellhole right now.”
9,000 people joined the rally, capital police reported.
Trump’s visit to Belgium is part of his first foreign trip since he took office. Accompanied with his wife, Melania, they both arrived in Brussels on Wednesday for a 24-hour stay before heading to Italy for the G7 conference.
Trump’s reasons for visiting Belgium
Trump’s plan in Brussels is to attend a NATO conference. It is predicted that the president will push the members to increase defense spending to 2% of their GDP.
However, the Belgians made it clear that Trump is not welcome, as long as he pushes “his war agenda.”
“He wants Europe to spend more money on war when he should be investing in peace,” Ludo De Brabander, an organizer of the protest, said. “If all the EU member states pay two percent of their GDP on military spending, that’s billions of dollars that should be spent helping the poor, not investing into a war machine.”
The protestor’s opinions of Trump
The rally was full of different types of people and inclinations. Aside from regular people who opposed Trump’s views, there were also pacifists, activists, women, students as well as left-wing trade unionists and members of the extreme-left anarchist group.
“I came particularly to fight against climate change,” 49-year old Katrien Vandevelde commented. “Trump is accelerating the melting of the ice caps. I so wish the moment he gets home he will be impeached and we can get Bernie Sanders and have the whole world fighting against global warming.”
“Trump is a dangerous man,” Malika Bali, another protestor, noted.
“He doesn’t like foreigners, he doesn’t like women and he is not welcome here,” she added.