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19 Dec, 2015 09:12

Hundreds join refugee solidarity rally in Madrid, slamming NATO invasions (VIDEO)

Hundreds join refugee solidarity rally in Madrid, slamming NATO invasions (VIDEO)

Around 800 protesters marched Friday night in Madrid to show support for refugees on the Global Day of Action against Racism. The protesters chanted anti-war slogans, and demanded that the EU open its borders and close refugee detention centers.

The march started at Madrid's Atocha railway station, and ended up near the Spanish Foreign Ministry, under the slogan: "We are all migrants and refugees, we all have rights."

Protesters’ main demands were to push the Spanish government and the EU to open its borders for incoming refugees, disband the EU’s border control authority Frontex, close immigration detention centers and to stop making bilateral agreements with neighboring Morocco and Turkey who were “not respecting human rights.”

The demonstrators also chanted anti-war slogans slamming NATO and military interventions.

“No to NATO! It is a means that has proven to be handled by interests that do not correspond with the majority of citizens,” an activist told RT’s Ruptly video agency. “It is a tool to create a world based on the power of the 1 percent that, blinded by their interests, continues to implement a warmonger system.”

Palestinian flags and slogans reading “Shame wall” (apparently referring to border fences that prevent refugees from crossing into the EU) and “No human is illegal” were also seen in the crowd.

Similar rallies were taking place across Europe on Friday, marking the Global Day of Action against Racism. 

In Greece, thousands of refugees and left activists took to the streets, shouting: “Open the borders!” demanding the refugees be granted permission to continue their journey to wealthier northern European countries. The march ended on Syntagma Square and the EU Commission Offices in Athens, being guarded by riot police.

Refugee solidarity events also took place in Italy, Austria and France, with participants also voicing demands to lift restrictions on crossing borders and speaking out against stricter rules for granting asylum.

Europe is now experiencing the largest influx of refugees from Middle East and North Africa since WWII. Hundreds of thousands were forced to leave their countries in pursuit of a safer life after the wave of Western-organized coups and bloody civil wars all across the region.