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Over 100'000 protestors demonstrate across Spain

Mon 20th Jun 2011

An estimated 100'000 protesters took place in a number of in cities across Spain yesterday, demonstrating against corrupt politicians and greedy bankers for implementing economic policies and austerity cuts that have led to the highest unemployment rate in the eurozone.

In Madrid protesters vented their anger against Parliament where up to 500 police mobilized to monitor the situation and keep the peace, however, the estimated 35,000 to 45,000 demonstrators resulted in no reported acts of violence.

In Barcelona 50,000 joined the protest, with smaller groups joining in the demonstration in other Towns and Cities across Spain.

The protests focused on the recent reforms to to employment law - whereby, in order to increase competitiveness within the EU, Spain must comply with the Eurozone's so-called 'EU pact'. The country has therefore implemented reforms that give businesses greater power to hire and fire their workers

Spain currently has an average 21% unemployment rate, however this rises to 40% in the under 25 age group.

The protest movement, calling themselves 'los Indignados' began on May 15th, to coincide with campaigning in the run up to the following week's regional and local elections. The outcome of the election was a major loss for the ruling Socialists, led by Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, following a reaction by the electorate against the state of the country's economy.

One month on, and the protest movement has gained momentum and spread across Spain with protesters on Sunday reading a manifesto calling for a general strike and even going as far as calling for a 'revolution'.

So far the politicians have done their best to ignore the protests, but Fridays protest outside the Catalan regional parliament and Tony Blair's urging of the Spanish PM to listen to the protestors may convince the cabinet otherwise.

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