Police in The Hague detain more than 200 for curfew violations as unrest continues

Dutch police on duty during a riot in the Schilderswijk district of The Hague, The Netherlands, on July 3, 2015.
Dutch police on duty during a riot in the Schilderswijk district of The Hague, The Netherlands, on July 3, 2015. PHOTO: EPA

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - Police in The Hague said on Friday they had detained more than 200 people overnight for violating terms of a curfew, as unrest in the city continued for a fourth night.

Protests in the mostly immigrant Schilderswijk neighborhood began on Monday amid anger over the death of a Caribbean man while in police custody.

However, the nighttime disturbances since then have been all but devoid of any protest message. Residents have asked the police and politicians to restore order, while Prime Minister Mark Rutte described youths lighting fireworks and throwing debris at police as "retarded".

Mayor Jozias van Aartsen promised a stronger response.

Of 61 people who had been arrested in connection with the unrest through Thursday, police said almost all were younger teens suspected of vandalism.

Most of the 200 detained on Thursday night and early on Friday were taken to jail by bus, fined and released to their parents'custody.

In a statement on Friday, police chief Paul van Musscher thanked residents who helped by approaching youths and telling them to go home.