Riot police needed at Madrid protests

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Spanish police clashed with protesters during an anti-austerity demonstration in Madrid that drew tens of thousands of people.

 

Police have confirmed in a statement that six officers were injured during the clash and 12 people were arrested.

Demonstrators from across Spain were protesting against government measures they claim have eroded Spain’s civil rights.  

Six columns of protesters, each one from a different region, arrived at the outskirts of the city before heading for Colon square. The demonstrators carried banners bearing the slogan “Marching for dignity”.

By evening the city’s main boulevard, Paseo del Prado, was packed with people chanting against the government’s austerity policies and cuts.

Near the end of the demonstration, during one of the final speeches, protesters attempted to break through a police barrier.

It is believed that they intended to head towards the nearby headquarters of the governing conservative Popular Party.

Since 2011, Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy and his government have brought in numerous austerity-driven tax hikes and cuts to government services in an attempt to slash the budget deficit.

Protestors were throwing bottles and not backing down. Riot police responded by charging the protesters, using their batons and rubber bullets to beat them back.

Reports indicate that one police vehicle and a bank were damaged by protesters.

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