A 65-year-old man jumped several metres from a public gallery onto the floor of the Dutch parliament yesterday with something tied around his neck, police said.
The man survived the apparent suicide attempt and was receiving medical treatment, police said in a statement.
Eyewitnesses said the man had been pacing about in an agitated state before tying something to a railing and jumping during a debate, the Telegraaf newspaper reported.
The paper identified him as an activist who had camped outside parliament for several weeks in a demonstration for the legalisation of hashish and marijuana.
"I had to do this to wake up the politicians," the Telegraaf quoted the man as having written in a post on Facebook.
Cannabis is technically illegal in the Netherlands, though it is widely available and police do not prosecute people for possession or sale of small amounts.
National broadcaster NOS showed video footage of lawmaker Arno Rutte speaking during the debate, then his shocked reaction when the incident unfolded off-camera. Shocked lawmakers could be see
- in a public video feed rushing to assist the man, who hit the ground with a loud thump. Photos on social media showed the man receiving first aid on a lawmaker's desk and later being carried out of parliament on a stretcher.
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