Rioting squatters cause widespread damage in Zurich: police

Around 1,000 people rioted in Zurich overnight, looting stores, burning cars and breaking windows, according to police who responded with rubber bullets, tear gas and water cannon.

The riot began with an unauthorised gathering late Saturday of more than 1,000 people near a squat that has been occupied since 2006 and that authorities announced they planned to evacuate, according to a statement from Zurich police on Sunday.

The squatters and their supporters, of the far-left, according to police, had begun moving through the city, setting dumpsters and cars on fire and looting stores.

Property worth hundreds of thousands of Swiss francs (dollars/euros) was destroyed and damaged in the clashes, according to the Swiss ATS news agency.

Police said they had used rubber bullets, tear gas and water cannon to contain the rioters, but stressed no one had been injured and no one had yet been arrested.

"The city police will do everything in their power to bring those responsible to justice," Zurich police said.