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2011 – that was the year that was

Greece, 20 January

Protesting Greek workers throw eggs and stones at police

Greece, 9 February

Greek doctors, health workers and pharmacists walk off the job and march to parliament to protest against an EU/IMF package aimed at cutting health spending….

Italy, 14 February

Women rally across Italy, incensed by Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi’s sex scandal which has hurt their dignity and reinforced outdated gender stereotypes..

Belgium, 24 March

Thousands of workers converging on the European Union summit to protest against an economic reform package they say is far too business-friendly….

Belgium, 25 March

Firefighters spray foam over police officers during a protest in Brussels. Members of Brussels’ fire brigade are demanding clearer rules with regards to nominations and promotions….

Spain, 7 April

Thousands of young Spaniards demonstrate in Madrid against the country’s unpopular austerity measures….

Italy, 11 April

Desperate Tunisian migrants stage a mutiny at a detention centre. Faced with imminent deportation from the Italian island of Lampedusa, they started a small fire and made a bid for freedom. Thousands fleeing political turmoil in Tunisia have made the crossing to Lampedusa this year. And they are determined not to go back.

Poland, 5 May

Several hundred Polish miners have attacked the company headquarters of KGHM mining in Lubin, asking for a pay rise….

France, 17 May

Sarkozy and G8 leaders walkabout in Deauville during the G8 summit. While in Paris, effigies of G8 leaders throw up their legs in protest in an Oxfam can-can outside Moulin Rouge….

Spain, 18 May

Thousands of Spaniards protesting joblessness have taken to the streets around the country in the past four days, stealing thunder from traditional political party campaign rallies ahead of May 22 local elections.

Greece, 15 June 

Protesters are met by hundreds of police officers in full riot gear outside the Greek parliament as a day of action against austerity measures began. Protesters vow to encircle parliament….

Greece, 19 June

Greek Communist Party supporters rally in the centre of Athens a day after Prime Minister George Papandreou reshuffles his cabinet in the face of mounting opposition to austerity measures within his own socialist PASOK party

Germany, 19 June

Hundreds of demonstrators gather in front of the German Chancellery in Berlin to protest against austerity measures and further conditions imposed on recipients of European financial aid packages.

Luxembourg, 21 June

About 10,000 people demonstrate against austerity measures imposed throughout the European Union to reduce budget deficits….

Italy, 25 June

Residents of Naples set fire to rubbish overnight in protest at the government’s failure to clear a backlog of more than 2,000kg of malodorous waste from the streets. Firefighters tackled about 55 rubbish fires, some of them in piles of waste 2m (6ft) high..

Germany, 3 September

German police use water cannon and batons against left-wing protesters as they try to disrupt a neo-Nazi march in Dortmund….

Italy, 17 September

Italian police rescue a boat with 120 Tunisian migrants off the coast of Lampedusa. About 1,300 illegal immigrants are currently held on this tiny island in Southern Italy.

Belgium, 22 September

Rubbish collectors take to the streets of Brussels over fears about jobs and pay because of a provisional deal decided by government to restructure the sector in the Belgian capital

Germany, 22 September

Hundreds of demonstrators gathered in central Berlin on Thursday to protest against the visit of the Pope Benedict in Germany.

Spain, 7 October

Hundreds of secondary school students march through central Madrid to protest against regional cuts to the education budget.

Greece, 12 October

More than 1,200 public sector employees take to the streets of Athens and stage a protest outside the Parliament over austerity measures

Belgium/Poland/Italy, 15 October

Street protests in three European countries, as part of global day of action by Occupy movement

Greece, 19 October

Central Athens is turned into a battlefield with demonstrators and riot police clashing as Greece experiences the biggest wave of protests since the beginning of the economic crisis.

France, 1 November

Protesters are converging on the French Riviera to urge the Group of 20 leading economies to focus on spreading global largesse more equitably instead of saving banks and pleasing financial markets.

Italy, 5 November

Three demonstrators from the Ukrainian protest group Femen stage a topless demonstration in Rome, covering themselves in bodypaint featuring the colours of the Italian flag and chanting slogans against Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.

Germany, 5 November

Some 1,200 supporters of the “Occupy Frankfurt” movement protest in Germany’s financial capital for a more equal distribution of wealth across the world.

Portugal, 24 November

Portuguese workers go on strike, halting public transport and factories in many parts of the country to protest against harsh austerity measures imposed as the price of an EU/IMF bailout.

Belgium. 2 December

Greenpeace campaigners park a truck in front of the building where chief executives of Europe’s biggest car companies were due to meet, blocking the main entrance.

Greece, 15 December

More than one thousand pensioners, some walking with canes, confronted police outside the Greek parliament during a protest march on Thursday (December 15), demanding better pensions and cheaper healthcare in response to government cutbacks.

France, December 20

Striking airline security contractors demonstrate in Paris’ Charles de Gaulle airport on the fifth day of a protest over pay and conditions that has spread to several major hubs in France.

Sources: Euronews

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