Climate activists breach German airport, glue themselves to runway during busy travel weekend

German police arrested eight climate activists who breached the grounds of Munich airport on Saturday, briefly causing the airport to close and leading to around 60 flight cancelations during a busy holiday weekend.

Six of the activists glued themselves to a runway, a police spokesperson said, adding the situation was now under control, with both of the airport’s runways open for arrivals and takeoffs.

Climate group Last Generation, which has carried out similar protests in the past, said it was responsible for the action in a series of posts on X showing members on what appeared to be a runway or tarmac with protest signs.

Climate activists breached security and glued themselves to a service road near a runaway at Munich airport on May 18. AufstandLastGen/X

The group later said six individuals had seated themselves on airport asphalt at 4:45 a.m. local time to block planes, and it criticized Berlin for subsidizing airlines at the expense of rail.

“Problem is the government, not our holiday,” one of the signs read.

Germany’s interior minister, Nancy Faeser, said security measures at the airport would be reviewed.

“Such criminal actions endanger air traffic and harm climate protection because they only cause contempt and anger,” she wrote on X.

“The perpetrators must be vigorously pursued,” she said.

The group later said six individuals had seated themselves on airport asphalt at 4:45 a.m. local time to block planes. AufstandLastGen/X
The group also criticized Berlin for subsidizing airlines at the expense of rail. AufstandLastGen/X

Germany’s transport minister, Volker Wissing, said new laws were needed to punish such actions as criminal, with up to two years in prison. Current laws classify them as minor offenses.

An airport spokesperson said the airport had been fully closed to takeoffs and landings for nearly two hours.

Climate activists lie on an access road for runways at the Munich airport, forcing the German airport to close for hours. AP
An airport spokesperson said the airport had been fully closed to takeoffs and landings for nearly two hours. REUTERS

Some 11 flights had been diverted, around 60 had been canceled, and delays were still possible, the person said.

The disruption occurred during one of the busiest travel periods for the airport in southern Germany, second only to the Easter holidays, according to the airport.

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