Thousands join another anti-government march
Thousands of anti-government protesters, many carrying EU flags, marched from József Nádor tér to the Parliament building yesterday evening. They listened to speeches along the route and chanted anti-government slogans in a mostly peaceful demonstration that ended with scattered skirmishes between demonstrators and police.
Along with Budapest, Szeged, Pécs and another 20 Hungarian cities joined the protest, while Hungarians reportedly also gathered in London and Paris.
Protesters and speakers expressed anger over the approved central budget for 2015, as well as the new education system and other government policies. Teachers at the protest called for a teachers' strike.
Another demonstration is scheduled for January 2 in front of the Hungarian opera house, in what would be a repeat of one of the first mass demonstations against this government – a protest against the new constitution on January 2, 2012.
Last night's protest started peacefully, and demonstrators collected Christmas presents for those in need. But after the official end of the protest in front of the Parliament building, many demonstrators gathered in front of the building, standing face to face with the special police squads assigned to protect the Parliament. Demonstrators started throwing oranges, eggs and empty plastic bottles at the policemen, who answered with pepper spray. According to reports, ATV reporters and other press workers were also sprayed. Although according to Origo’s reports, the Hungarian police officially said that they do not know of injuries, Origo and Index posted photos of two bleeding protesters.
Demonstrations of tens of thousands, and in one case 100,000, began on October 26, with opposition to a proposed internet tax, which was soon after abandoned by the government. Demonstrators have since made it clear that they have a multitude of problems with the current leadership.
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