MOSCOW — Workers and activists around the world marked May Day on Tuesday with rallies and other events to press their governments to address labor issues.

International Workers’ Day is a public holiday in many countries, although activities are restricted in some places, sometimes leading to confrontations.

A look at some of the events around the world:


Thousands of people marched across the French capital to protest President Emmanuel Macron’s economic policies during a May Day event that brought scattered acts of vandalism and arson to Paris.

Several vehicles, including a car, a motorbike and a construction digger, were set on fire. A Renault dealership and another car shop were smashed up, and a McDonald’s restaurant was looted and left blackened by smoke.

Paris Police Prefect Michel Delpuech said a group called the Black Blocs was responsible. Delpuech estimated that group accounted for 1,200 of the day’s 20,000 demonstrators. The vast majority of marchers were peaceful, he said.

The Paris march was among protests held nationwide to oppose changes promoted by Macron, who wants to end some worker protections.


More than 100,000 people flooded the streets on Moscow to march in the traditional May Day parade.

Over recent years, the parade became a highly orchestrated show of power by Russian authorities and the ruling United Russia party, with the demonstrators refraining from criticizing the government.

In St. Petersburg, Russia’s second-largest city, however, Russians unhappy with the Kremlin’s attempts to curtail internet freedom joined the official May Day demonstration.

Several hundred people marched across St. Petersburg to protest the government’s ban of the popular messaging app Telegram.


Thousands of Puerto Ricans marched to protest pension cuts, school closures and slow hurricane recovery efforts as anger grows across the U.S. territory over looming austerity measures.

The protest attracted teachers, retirees and unionized workers. Yulin Cruz, ayor of the capital Carmen, was among those marching.

Puerto Rico is mired in an 11-year recession and trying to restructure its $72 billion public debt load as it struggles to recover from Hurricane Maria. About 30,000 power customers remain in the dark after the Category 4 storm struck on Sept. 20.


More than 70 cities across Spain have held May Day marches calling for gender equality, higher salaries and pensions now that the country’s economy is back on track.

The demonstration in Madrid was among the biggest, with thousands rallying behind the slogan “Time to win.”

CCOO union official Unai Sordo says that “a social majority is emerging from the psychosis of the (global financial) crisis” in 2008 that hit Spain hard.

Pepe Alvarez, the secretary general of UGT, the other main union in Spain, said that meeting the demands of feminists, youths and pensioners are necessary to “redistribute wealth” in the country.


Hundreds of trade union members gathered outside the Macedonian government building in the capital on May Day to protest poor labor conditions and to call for the protection of workers’ rights.

The National Federation of Trade Unions led the march from downtown Skopje to the government building, seeking legal changes that would protect workers and improve collective wage agreements.

The Independent Union of Journalists and Media Workers joined the protest, demanding decent working conditions and better salaries.


About 5,000 people from various groups rallied near the presidential palace in Manila to protest the failure of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte to fulfill a major campaign promise to end contractualization, the widespread practice of short-term employment.

The protesters also demanded that the government address issues including low wages, unemployment and trade union repression.


About 10,000 workers from various labor groups rallied near the presidential palace in Jakarta to voice their demands.

Most of the workers came from Jakarta and nearby suburbs, but some traveled from West Java and Surabaya.

The protesters urged the government to avoid outsourcing, and to raise their wages. They also asked the government to stop foreign laborers from working in Indonesia, saying it decreases employment opportunities for local workers.

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