World-Wide Protest

On Saturday February 15, people all over the world took to the streets to voice their opposition to war with Iraq. Below are images of rallys and demonstrations from around the globe. A story from, with crowd estimates and event descriptions, follows.

Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Crowd estimate: 80,000

Crowd estimate: 51

Athens, Greece
Crowd estimate: 200,000

Barcelona, Spain
Crowd estimate: 1 million

Berlin, Germany
Crowd estimate: 500,000

Damascus, Syria
Crowd estimate: 200,000

Dunedin, New Zealand

Hong Kong

Istanbul, Turkey
Crowd estimate: 5,000

Jakarta, Indonesia

Johannesburg, South Africa
Crowd estimate: 10,000

London, England
Crowd estimate: 1.75 million

Hyde Park, London, England
Crowd estimate: 1.75 million

Madrid, Spain
Crowd estimate: 1 million

Minneapolis, MN
Crowd estimate: 10,000

New York City, NY
Crowd estimate: 500,000
View: North up First Avenue from 51st Street to 72nd Street

New York City, NY
Crowd estimate: 500,000

Paris, France
Crowd estimate: 250,000

Rome, Italy
Crowd estimate: 2.5 million

Sacramento, CA

Seoul, South Korea
Crowd estimate: 10,000

Tel Aviv, Israel
Crowd estimate: 1,500

Vienna, Austria
Crowd estimate: 200,000


Saturday, February 15, 2003

LONDON, England -- Hundreds of thousands of people have started to fill streets across the globe in opposition to military action against Iraq.

The Australian city of Melbourne kicked off the global series of weekend demonstrations that will eventually spread to 600 towns and cities stretching from Antarctica to Reykjavik, Iceland.

Marches are being held from the Pacific islands to Europe, and from New York to California, where protests are expected to recall demonstrations against the Vietnam War.

The biggest protests are planned for Europe, with, according to police, 500,000 expected in London and 100,000 across Germany.

In Paris, France, the organizers told Reuters that they expect a turnout of 50,000, and, according to London's Guardian newspaper, Barcelona, Spain, could match London with a 500,000-strong protest.

With opposition to military action remaining stubbornly high in Britain, Prime Minister Tony Blair's ready enlistment in U.S. President George W. Bush's "coalition of the willing" against Iraqi President Saddam Hussein has put Blair in collision with European heavyweights France and Germany.

The Australian government has joined Britain and the United States in committing troops to a possible war, but that alignment has not gone down well with the Australian public.

In several European cities Thursday, demonstrators protested U.S. policies and possible war with Iraq.

In Vienna, Greenpeace activists covered parts of the Austrian capital's famous Burgtheater with an anti-war banner showing a portrait of President Bush with his eyes covered by the signs of the Esso oil company. The picture, which was projected onto a large white fabric attached to the historic building, also included the words: "No war for oil!" and "Stop Esso, stop Bush."

In several German cities, more than 10,000 people took part in demonstrations, underlining support for Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder's stance against military intervention. In Dresden, survivors marked the 58th anniversary of the Allied bombing that devastated the city at the end of World War II.

In Rome, Italy, about 20 demonstrators occupied an airstrip at a military airport, while in Padua, protesters targeted a produce market that supplies U.S. bases as well as a stretch of Naples' port.

In Istanbul, Turkish police clashed with demonstrators and detained 45 protesters.

Protests around the world
Australia: Police estimated 150,000 people protested in Melbourne, The Associated Press reported, while organizers put the crowd at 200,000. The AP said it was the biggest peace protest in the country since marches 30 years ago against the Vietnam War, in which Australian troops fought alongside U.S. forces. (Full story)

Japan: About 6,000 people marched through downtown Tokyo on Friday night, the AP said. They waved banners and chanted slogans against the backdrop of the John Lennon song "Imagine."

United States: Up to 100,000 people are expected in New York, where Archbishop Desmond Tutu and actors Susan Sarandon and Danny Glover will address a rally in Manhattan.

United Kingdom: In Britain, several lawmakers from Prime Minister Tony Blair's Labor Party will be among the protesters, including former Northern Ireland secretary Mo Mowlam, reflecting unease felt by many of Blair's center-left and labor union supporters.

Leaders of railway, firefighters and general workers' unions will address the London event, alongside U.S. civil rights leader Jesse Jackson, playwright Harold Pinter, activist Bianca Jagger, the leader of Britain's opposition Liberal Democrats, and the ex-president of Algeria, Ahmed Ben Bella.

Jackson told British radio that Blair should meet Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein for talks to avoid war, which he said should be avoided unless "overwhelming evidence" of the threat Iraq poses could be produced.

"Iraq is a challenge that must be put in perspective. It is not the priority that Bush and Blair have made it to be," he said.

Kate Hudson of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, one of the organizers of the London march, told CNN that: "We do not feel that war is the appropriate way of dealing with the issues. Disarmament is not best brought about by the bombing of the people of that country.

"There is no framework within international law for external forces to bring about regime change. It is against international law," she said.

"We do not want a situation where hundreds or thousands of people are going to be killed because someone has a warmongering approach. It is not an appropriate attitude of responsible government."