"Zombie” protesters demonstrate before the start of the G20 summit in Hamburg, northern Germany. LUKAS BARTH-TUTTAS

Zombies welcome G20 to Hell

HUNDREDS of activists have dressed as zombies to protest the G20 summit in a Welcome to Hell demonstration.

The streets of Hamburg looked like a scene from Night of the Living Dead as protesters covered in grey clay shuffled through the city centre in a trance-like state.

Once they assembled in a central square, the activists ripped off their outer grey coverings to reveal naked bodies or colourful clothing.

The peaceful left-wing protest was intended to make a powerful statement just as world leaders, including Donald Trump, arrived in the German city.

"We are calling on the world to make Hamburg a focal point of the resistance against the old and new capitalist authorities,” organisers said in a statement.

Catalina Lopez, one of the organisers, told Reuters: "The goal of our performance today is to move the people in their hearts, to give them the motivation to get politically engaged again.

"We want to create an image, because we believe in the power of images. We want to motivate people to take part ... in the political process.”

The Welcome to Hell, organised by the collective the 1000 Gestalten (1000 Figures) group, is one of dozens of protests expected.

In the weeks leading up to the summit, police cars have been burned and train lines sabotaged.

Authorities in Hamburg and nearby Rostock have confiscated improvised weapons such as fire extinguishers filled with flammable liquid; baseball bats and other items.

"We have to assume that this is only a tiny percentage of what is still in basements and garages in and around Hamburg,” Hamburg police criminal director Jan Hieber told reporters this week.

In a preview of likely events, police clashed in Hamburg with hundreds of protesters on Tuesday, using pepper spray and water cannons to bring the crowd under control.

- Jenny Awford, The Sun

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