Video – May Day carnage, riots across Europe

Molotov cocktail thrown at Parisian police catches fire
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ANNUAL May Day protests have descended into violence as thousands took to the streets across many European cities. 

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VIOLENCE ACROSS EUROPE
GETTY – Violent scenes broke out across many European cities during May Day marches
May Day – or ‘Labour Day’ – is observed all over the world on the first day of May to celebrate the economic and social achievements of workers and fight for labourers rights.

In France, horrfying images of police being attacked with Molotov cocktails have emerged.

In Paris, riot police attempted to control the crowds at the city’s traditional labour union march.

Police fired tear gas at rowdy protesters on the sidelines of a May Day workers’ march in Paris but hooded youth attacked security forces.

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Video showed riot police surrounding the protesters disrupting the march after isolating most of them from the rest of the crowd near the Place de la Bastille.


However, some continued to lob firebombs that exploded into flames in the street.

A policeman has been seriously burnt and two others injured in the clashes.

According to some reports five more officers were hurt in the violence.

Television pictures showed policemen trying to shake flames from their riot gear, and of tear gas enveloping the streets around Paris’ Bastille monument.

Around 250 events are planned across the country for May Day – a traditional day of protesting – with thousands of people and trade unions demonstrating in cities including Lyon, Toulouse and Strasbourg.

The annual march to celebrate workers’ rights this year included calls to block presidential candidate Marine Le Pen from winning the presidency during a runoff election on Sunday.

Meanwhile in Italy, violent scenes erupted in the northern city of Turin, as demonstrators clashed with police during the traditional Labour Day march.

Riot officers were deployed after more than 200 people gathered in the Via Cesare Battisti in an attempt to divert the authorised march route.

Fire with French CRS anti-riot police officers
AFP/ GETTY – Protesters launch a burning trolley towards French CRS anti-riot police officers
Three people were arrested after a group began pelting law enforcement officials with eggs.

Police say a number of items used in the violence, including umbrellas and sticks, were confiscated during the protest.

Protests in France
GETTY – Flaming trolley launched at police in France during May Day protests
Italy protest
EPA – Protests in Turin turned violent
Protesters have begun throwing smoke bombs in the Kreuzberg district of Berlin, Germany.

The streets have been filled with hooded youths as police gather to try and prevent scenes similar to those in France and Turkey.In Turkey, police were forced to use tear gas and plastic bullets to disperse protesters seeking to defy a ban and march to Istanbul’s Taksim square to celebrate May Day.

More than 200 protesters in the Gayrettepe district on the European side of Istanbul attempted to walk to the famous square in spite of the ban by city authorities.

Protesters in Kreuzberg
GETTY – Leftist demonstrators clash with riot police during the May Day protest in Kreuzberg
May day in Kreuzberg: Youths gather on the streets
AFP – May Day in Kreuzberg, Germany as hooded youths gather for labour rally
The protesters – made up of left-wing groups – unfurled anti-government banners against the result of the April 16 referendum, which handed President Recep Tayyip Erdogan expanded powers.

Turkish authorities imposed a ban on any demonstration at Taksim square, with police sealing off the avenue with barricades and halting traffic.

italy may day
EPA

Riot officers were deployed after more than 200 people gathered in an avenue

According to the Dogan news agency, police detained two women who attempted to unfurl banners at the square.

Reports from the state-run Anadolu news agency claim 13 people were arrested during today’s protests in Taksim, while AFP reported a further 60 people were detained in the Besiktas district.

Around 30,000 police officers were on duty in Istanbul alone, with the governor’s office urging citizens not to heed calls for protests in non-official areas.

ITALY MAY DAY
EPA – The city of Turin saw violence break out between protesters and riot police
Police checked both tourists and citizens passing through Taksim, and all streets leading to the square were cordoned off with iron barricades.

Metro lines did not stop at Taksim square, which was a rallying ground for May Day celebrations until 1977, when at least 34 people were killed during demonstrations.

In Spain, the country’s two major unions called for marches in more than 70 cities under the slogan ‘No More Excuses’.

The UGT and CC.OO unions demanded that Spain’s conservative government roll back its labour reforms that have made it easier to fire workers, and called for an increase in wages and pensions.

ISTANBUL PROTEST
GETTY – Around 30,000 police officers were on duty in Istanbul alone
CC.OO general secretary Ignacio Fernandez Toxo said: “Spain has been growing for two years and now it is time for the economy to align itself with the needs of the people.”

He spoke at a march of several thousand people in Madrid, which he led alongside UGT leader Josep Maria Alvarez.

Thousands more marched in Barcelona, while other rallies were held in Seville, Valencia and other cities.

-Express

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