New Zealand

New Zealand anti-vaccine protesters continue their siege of parliament.

The number of protesters outside New Zealand's parliament increased on Friday as police scaled back their efforts to clear out anti-vaccine protesters involved in violent clashes the previous day.

A festive atmosphere prevailed in a makeshift camp that residents dubbed "Camp Freedom", with music and dancing as police looked on from behind barricades.

The number of protesters on the lawns rose from about 250 to nearly 1,500 on Friday.

New Zealand requires people working in sectors such as health, law enforcement, education and defence to be mandatorily vaccinated against the Covid virus, and those who refuse the vaccine must be dismissed.

Proof of vaccination must also be shown to enter restaurants, sporting events and religious services.