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Demanding dignity and end of economic status quo that undermines labor rights and fair treatment, world’s labor force celebrates and activates

– Common Dreams staff

In marches and street demonstrations, people across the world on Thursday were marking May Day, or International Labr Day, by demanding better treatment of working people and union members as they also called  for respect of democratic freedoms and equal rights.

In Turkeythousands of people defied new laws barring unauthorized public protest and took to the street in Instanbul where they met with police in violent clashes:Turkish protesters clash with police in Instanbul.A protester (C) takes aim at riot police with a slingshot during a May Day demonstration in Istanbul May 1, 2014. (Photo: REUTERS/Murad Sezer)In Spain, unions members and other workers expressed opposition to the their government’s severe austerity measures and misguided approach to the economy:Union leaders during May Day celebrations in Bilbao The banner in front reads, “Without Quality Employment, There is no Recovery’ (Photograph: VINCENT WEST/Reuters)In Bangladeshgarment factory workers and others staged protests in the city of Dhaka to once again demand reforms to labor practices in the country:Bangladeshi garment workers and activists shout slogans demanding punishment for owners of garment factories that have had accidents in the past, compensation for victims and ensuring work place safety during a May Day rally in Dhaka, Bangladesh,Thursday, May 1, 2014. (AP Photo/A.M. Ahad)In Cambodiafactory workers also demanded an end to inhumane labor laws and lax protections:

Portraits of Cambodian workers who died during a protest demanding increased wages on 03 January 2014, are seen during a gathering in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, 01 May 2014. Workers gathered on the streets in Phnom Penh to mark the International Labor Day. (Photo: EPA/MAK REMISSA)In Russialarge marches in Moscow celebrated the nation’s socialist roots but also railed against the policies of Putin’s autoacratic power-hold, assault on democracy, and terrible record on human rights and equality:Members of Russian Trade Unions march during the May Day celebration in Red Square, Moscow, Russia, on Thursday, May 1, 2014. About 100,000 people have marched through Red Square to celebrate May Day, the first time the annual parade has been held on the vast cobblestoned square outside the Kremlin since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev)Gay rights activists march during a May Day rally in St Petersburg, Russia. The banner reads, “Love is stronger than war!” (Photograph: Reuters)In Thailand, laborers in Bangkok marched and called for the improvement of the nation’s labor laws and an increase to the minimum wage:Thai laborers with national flags march to mark International May Day at Royal Plaza in Bangkok, Thailand, 01 May 2014. Thousands of Thai laborers rally on Labor Day calling on the government to improve the standards of their work and living conditions. (Photo: EPA/RUNGROJ YONGRIT)In Germany, anti-capitalist demonstrators marched through Berlin calling for an end to the destructive nature of the system:Protesters hold a banner with the words ‘Make Capitalism History!’ during the eve of 01 May protest in Hamburg, Germany, 30 April 2014. (Photo: EPA/MAJA HITIJ)In Indonesiatens of thousands marched in Jakarta:

In the Philippinesworkers rallied outside the Presidential Palace and criticized the government’s failed economic policies:Workers shout slogans as they hold a rally near the Presidential Palace to mark the Labor Day celebrations on Thursday, May 1, 2014 in Manila, Philippines. Various labor groups nationwide held protests, mostly to demand wage hikes, better working conditions and an end to corruption in the government. The sign reads: Workers Have Zero Benefits In The Four Years of Capitalist Government of Aquino. (Photo: AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)


IBW21 (The Institute of the Black World 21st Century) is committed to enhancing the capacity of Black communities in the U.S. and globally to achieve cultural, social, economic and political equality and an enhanced quality of life for all marginalized people.