Posted on November 15, 2012 by Laura
original link: https://rt.com/news/austerity-protests-eu-solidarity-727/
Published: 15 November, 2012, 05:17
Protesters take part in a demonstration during a general strike on November 14, 2012 in Valencia. (AFP Photo/Jose Jordan)
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Massive anti-austerity strikes and protests swept across Europe as
millions took to the streets to express their frustration over rising
unemployment and dire economic prospects. Many rallies ended with
violent clashes with police.
Workers marched in 23 countries across Europe to mark the European Day of Action and Solidarity.
General strikes had been called in Spain and Portugal, paralyzing
public services and international flights, in Belgium and France
transport links were partially disrupted by strikes and demonstrations,
in Italy and Greece thousands of workers and students marched through
Other EU countries, such as Germany, Austria and Poland, saw well attended union-led rallies.
Europe-wide strike action, the largest in a series of protests against
the austerity policies, was coordinated by the European Trade Union
Confederation (ETUC) and promoted on Twitter under the “#14N” hashtag.
attend a demonstration called by unions, as part an European day of
protest against austerity, on November 14, 2012 in Marseille,
southeastern France. (AFP Photo/Anne-Christine Poujoulat)
Spain on strike
Spain, which has the highest unemployment rate in the industrialized
world, pioneered the action, with protests and clashes starting
overnight and dozens of arrests reported by morning. According to the
unions, some 9 million workers took to the streets across the nation.
Police fired rubber bullets to disperse protesters in Madrid and
Barcelona. More than 142 people were arrested and at least 74 injured,
including 43 policemen, Spanish police said.
Slogans like “Rajoy Go Home” were chanted by Spaniards
outraged over Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s public spending cuts that
have led to a 26% unemployment rate in the country.
Leaflets saying “They leave us without future. They are the guilty ones. There are other solutions” could be seen all around Madrid.
Image from Twitter/@SaraFirth_RT
Protesters attend a demonstration during a general strike on November 14, 2012 in Madrid. (AFP Photo/Javier Soriano)
Chaos in Rome
Strikes and violent protests gripped Italy,
as tens of thousands protesters took to the streets all over the
country rallying against Prime Minister Mario Monti’s austerity
became the center of the chaos, as rioting workers and students brought
the streets to a standstill when they confronted the police, throwing
rocks, bottles and firecrackers at them.
To scatter the protesters police fired teargas and more than 50 people were arrested. At least 17 police officers were injured,
policemen fight with demonstrators during a protest on a day of
mobilisation against austerity measures by workers in southern Europe on
November 14, 2012 in Rome. (AFP Photo/Filippo Monteforte)
‘The Troika does not rule here’
Portugal entered the general strike with anti-austerity rallies in 40 towns and cities throughout the country.
Lisbon froze as people poured into the streets: the subway was shut
down, railway strikes left commuters stranded and half of the flights
Thousands of people frustrated by a record 15.8 per cent unemployment
rate, gathered in front of the Portuguese parliament building, shouting
“The troika does not rule here!”
The clashes broke out as police tried to clear the streets of Lisbon
in the evening with protesters throwing stones and rubbish in response.
At least five injuries have been reported by Portuguese police, with
one protester taken to hospital. After more than an hour of standoff,
the Lisbon demonstrators were dispersed.
Protesters march in Lisbon during a general strike on November 14, 2012. (AFP Photo/Patricia De Melo Moreira)
After last week’s vigorous 48-hour anti-austerity strike, Greeks
gathered in a relatively quiet 5000-strong protest in Athens and called
for a three-hour work stoppage in solidarity with the Spaniards,
Italians and Portuguese.
People chanted “Athens, Rome, Madrid, Lisbon – everyone in the streets!”
as they marched on Syntagma Square carrying flags. There were minor
clashes with police, but the demonstration was mainly peaceful.
from a Greek puppet center stage a performance outside the Greek
parliament in Athens, during an anti-austerity protest on November 14,
2012. (AFP Photo/Louisa Gouliamaki)
Meanwhile, in Brussels eggs and firecrackers were thrown at
Portugal’s embassy as part of the solidarity protests as crowds of
people came to the European Union headquarters to demonstrate.
But although the demonstrations in Belgium were largely peaceful, the
unions managed to disrupt transport links as railway workers halted
high-speed train services countrywide.
France was hit by 130 rallies against austerity measures, with the French government lashed by the demonstrators.
The French General Confederation of Labor referred to the 14 November
strikes as the first “social movement of this scale” in the history of
People shout slogans and carry banners on November 14,2012, in front of
the EU Headquarters in Brussels. (AFP Photo/Georges Gobet)
The European Day of Action and Solidarity organized under the slogan
“For Jobs and Solidarity in Europe. No to Austerity” was meant to
deliver a message to EU leaders to stop raising taxes and cutting
But despite mounting frustration and public anger, the governments of
the crisis-stricken EU countries are showing few signs of abandoning
austerity, which they believe is the best method to get their economies
out of debt and back on a sound footing.
A demonstrator holds a flare during an anti-austerity protest in Lyon on November 14, 2012. (AFP Photo/Jeff Pachoud)
police officers clash with protesters at the end of a demonstration
organized by Spain’s “indignant” protesters, a popular movement against a
political system that they say deprives ordinary Spaniards of a voice
in the crisis, near the parliament building in Madrid during a general
strike. (AFP Photo/Cesar Manso)
march during a protest on a day of mobilisation against austerity
measures by workers in southern Europe on November 14, 2012 in Rome.
(AFP Photo/Filippo Monteforte)
Protesters hold a banner during an anti-austerity protest outside the
parliament in Athens on November 14, 2012. (AFP Photo/Aris Messinis)
protester throws stones at police officers during a demonstration
outside the Portuguese Parliament in Lisbon on November 14, 2012 during a
general strike. (AFP Photo/Miguiel Riopa)
Belgian workers take part in a demonstration during an European strike in La Louviere November 14, 2012. (Reuters/Eric Vidal)
Thanks to: http://2012indyinfo.com