Arab Today, arab today many countries celebrate labor day amid protests
Last Updated : GMT 21:26:48
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

Many countries celebrate Labor Day amid protests

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Many countries celebrate Labor Day amid protests

London - KUNA

Thousands rallied to celebrate May Day (Labor Day), amidst heightened security and emotional build-up in public squares around the world to protest against harsh austerity measures, poor working conditions and low wages. In Morocco, and despite the government's decision to increase the minimum wage for public and private sectors on the occasion of International Labor Day, many workers protested low wages and high prices in the country. Protesters took the streets, called upon by Moroccan unions, carrying signs calling for improving their social status in various cities. The protesters called on the government to implement its plans and commit to agreements with the unions. They also carried signs in solidarity with Arab and Islamic causes, particularly Palestine and unity of Moroccan territories, condemning as well the Israeli aggression on Al-Aqsa mosque. The protesters called for assurances to their rights and freedoms, including respect labor laws, and approving compensations to those who lost their jobs. Meanwhile, in Algeria, Secretary General of the General Union of Algerian Workers (UGTA), Abdelmadjid Sidi Al-Said, underlined that the commemoration of Labor Day "coincides with the victory of democracy in the presidential election of April 17. "The Algerian people's renewed confidence in President Bouteflika shows acknowledgment for his (Bouteflika) achievements during previous terms in office at the political, economic and social levels," Al-Said added. The Algerian official also welcomed the decision of the President to abrogate Article 87/A of the Labor code. In Madrid, tens of thousands of Spanish citizens marched in 70 demonstration across the country, demanding an end to austerity measures and to provide decent and stable job opportunities with full rights. The main demonstration took place in Bilbao, north of the country, under the slogan "no economic recovery in the absence of quality jobs," with demonstrators chanting for more social cohesion and greater democracy, similar to their counterparts in other cities and regions in Spain. They also demanded that the government take measures and policies aimed at reducing unemployment while respecting the rights of all workers. In this regard, the Spanish Chief of Trade Unions and the Secretary General of the Workers Union in the country called, in a press conference, for urgent changes in economic and labor policies; six years since the start of the economic crisis. The two officials said that austerity measures taken by the government caused the loss of hundreds of thousands of businesses and jobs, noting that the data published last week showed that the unemployment rate stood at 25.9 percent in labor force since the first quarter of this year. The officials said such data represented a slight decrease compared to the previous quarter which "proved that the Spanish economic outlook is still negative." They criticized the Spanish government's remarks yesterday that the country has overcame the economic crisis and achieved an economic upward trend in the first quarter of this year, stressing that "about six million people are without a job in Spain, therefore there is no economic recovery in the country." In Russia, Some 100,000 workers joined a 'May Day' parade in Moscow's Red Square for the first time since the 1991 Soviet Union breakup, as the takeover of Crimea boosts President Vladimir Putin's standing amid a surge of patriotism. A huge column of demonstrators waving Russian flags and balloons marched through the iconic square near the Kremlin walls, as trade union leaders addressed them from the podium. "Putin is right", "Proud of the country" and "Let's support decisions of our president" read the banners carried by the smiling demonstrators in a carefully-choreographed spectacle harking back to Soviet times. Moscow police said more than 100,000 people took part in the "march of trade unions" in Red Square. The Kremlin is keen to show that Russians are ready to rally around the 61-year-old strongman despite the latest round of biting Western sanctions slapped on its officials and companies over the Ukraine crisis, and brewing economic trouble. Trade union leaders said about two million people had turned up for May Day rallies across Russia

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