As May Day marchers took to the streets in marches across the world, Turkish police detained 212 demonstrators for conducting unauthorised demonstrations despite coronavirus lockdown restrictions.
Turkey’s first full lockdown of the pandemic began on Thursday as a result of an unprecedented increase in coronavirus cases, but that didn’t stop people from taking to the streets.
Turkish police officers were instructed by the country’s police department to prevent journalists and demonstrators from recording detentions with their phones.
The majority of the violence in Istanbul occurred as protestors attempted to enter Taksim Square, where more than 30 protesters were killed by alleged far-right gunmen on May Day in 1977.
Although riot police used their shields to drive back crowds and pull demonstrators away, some small authorised groups were able to lay wreaths.
Marches for International Labor Day were largely peaceful in Russia, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom, Cuba, the Philippines, Indonesia, and several other nations.
At least four killed in Colombian protests
Colombian street demonstrations against a government tax reform plan entered their fourth day.
On Wednesday, unions and other organizations began marching to demand that President Ivan Duque’s government withdraw the reform plan, which initially proposed a flat sales tax on public utilities and some food.
Cali, the country’s third-largest city, has seen the most raucous marches, some looting, and at least three deaths linked to the protests, while a police officer was killed in the city of Soacha.
Human Rights Watch said it had received reports of suspected police brutality in Cali, with local human rights organizations claiming up to 14 deaths.
Despite Mr. Duque’s announcement late Friday that the reform would be amended and would no longer include sales taxes on food, services, or gasoline, as well as an increase in income tax, protests continued on Saturday.
Scuffles erupt in Germany and France
In Paris, 34 people were detained as police used tear gas to keep a crowd of thousands carrying union banners and flags under control.
In the capital, riot police clashed with some protesters, while burning roadblocks spewed clouds of smoke.
However, the vast majority of the hundreds of marches that took place around France went off without a hitch.
Scuffles broke out in Berlin, Germany, between police and May Day demonstrators.
On Sonnenallee lane, one of Berlin’s main thoroughfares, several garbage containers were set on fire.
May Day scuffles have erupted in Berlin for decades, with some years devolving into violent street fights.
The crowd on Saturday was mainly made up of young people, some of whom were left-wing supporters who were outraged by rising wage disparities and the spread of gentrification in low-rent areas.
Bottles and stones were thrown at officers securing the area to ensure “a secure arrival” of the fire department, according to Berlin police.
The police were also facing “counter-attacks on officers, arson, and bottle and stone throwing,” according to another tweet.
Calls for immigration reform in the US
Thousands of migrants and progressives marched in Washington to demand immigration reform.
Demonstrators demanded that the Biden administration halt deportations and include a path to citizenship for the estimated 11 million undocumented migrants in the United States, including DACA applicants and others with Temporary Protected Status.
The rally began near the US Capitol and ended at Black Lives Matter Plaza.
Many speakers said that although President Joe Biden campaigned on immigration reform, he has struggled to implement it.
Mr Biden moved quickly to undo some of former President Donald Trump’s harsh immigration policies during his first 100 days in office, but he has struggled to cope with a surge of migrants arriving at the US-Mexico border, including tens of thousands of families and unaccompanied children.
Mr. Biden initially said that he would raise the number of refugees accepted into the United States, but later changed his mind and agreed to Mr. Trump’s traditionally low cap for this year.
May Day marches in other cities across the United States demanded respect for workers’ rights and police accountability.
Source: ABC World News