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Spain sees first 'feminist strike' on Women's Day

Posted: 8:43 AM, Mar 08, 2018
Updated: 2018-03-08 13:43:54Z

Thousands of women are downing tools, boycotting domestic tasks and occupying the streets of Spain as part of a global strike on International Women's Day.

"Today we claim a society free of oppression, exploitation and sexual violence," said the organizers of the nation's first "feminist strike" in their manifesto. "We call for rebellion and the struggle against the alliance between patriarchy and capitalism that wants us to be docile, submissive and silent."

Twenty-four hours of strikes and rallies kicked off at midnight in Madrid. Protesters gathered at the central square banging pots and pans as the city council buildings behind them were lit up in purple, the official color of #IWD2018.

As light dawned, demonstrators began gathering in cities across the country to call for an end to unequal pay and precarious working conditions, and to draw attention to the role of women in "devalued" domestic labor.

Most of the country's unions called for a 24-hour strike, while two of the biggest have asked their members to stop work for just two hours.

While Spain is seeing some of the largest walkouts, women in many other countries around the world are also on strike Thursday in response to the call for a global work stoppage.

A national strike in Italy is disrupting rail and air transport, while cities across the UK are also seeing rallies by striking women.