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Zurich Police Intervene to Quell Clashes Among Eritrean Groups - September 3rd 2023

Zurich police intervene after clashes between groups of Eritreans - September 3rd 2023

On the heels of the anniversary marking Isaias Afwerki's ascension to power in Eritrea, unrest and clashes flared across multiple cities. Incidents erupted in Tel Aviv, Israel, Bergen, Norway, and two Swiss towns, leaving several individuals injured.

In Opfikon, a city just north of Zurich, a significant police operation unfolded as law enforcement responded to a violent clash between two Eritrean groups.

Swift Police Action in Opfikon

In a proactive move, local law enforcement rapidly intervened to defuse tensions between the two Eritrean factions, successfully quelling the violent confrontation. Initially scheduled to transpire in Canton St. Gallen, the gathering was relocated to Opfikon, where participants had traveled from various locations, according to statements from police spokesperson Ralph Hirt to the Keystone-SDA news agency.

Efforts to Ensure Public Safety

As tensions escalated, police units outfitted in protective gear converged upon Glattpark in Opfikon, as reported by Swiss public television SRF. An impressive fleet of up to 30 police patrol cars and ambulances responded to the situation following the alarm. The scene also saw the deployment of a Rega rescue helicopter and a police helicopter. Instances of police officers using pepper spray were captured in online videos, aiming to restore order and safety. Subsequently, a group of demonstrators was encircled, ostensibly to prevent further clashes. The situation seemed to have de-escalated around 8:30 pm, leading to the dispersal of the crowd. In total, twelve individuals sustained injuries and were transported to local hospitals for medical attention.


In the aftermath of clashes between Eritrean groups in Opfikon, Zurich, authorities took swift and effective measures to quell the violence and safeguard public order. As clashes erupted in multiple cities in the wake of an important anniversary, the incident underscores the importance of maintaining peace and harmony within diverse communities.

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