Published: 11 July, 2012, 14:22
Coal miners shout slogans in Madrid's Puerta del Sol at the end of their "Marcha Negra" (Black March) early July 11, 2012 (Reuters/Juan Medina)
Thousands of Spanish miners and their supporters flooded the streets of Madrid in a second day of mass protests, just hours after the country’s leader announced a nationwide tax hike.
Workers marched up the city’s main avenue, wearing hardhats and carrying walking sticks, to protest outside the Industry Ministry.
Many walked for nearly three weeks in the blazing sun before finally reaching Madrid.
The crowd chanted, “Miners, stick it out, Spain is rising up!” as they made their way toward Madrid’s central square on Tuesday.
"We didn't expect such a big welcome. The fact that people are coming into the street and mobilizing is a good sign,” Roberto Quintas, a miner of 22 years, told AFP.
Workers set off fireworks, generating large puffs of smoke along the streets.
Some came from the north of Spain, where protests outside coal mines resulted in clashes with police just three weeks ago.
The miners were joined by relatives and supporters, also angry at cuts made in response to the economic crisis.
Wednesday’s protest came as the country’s leader announced a nationwide tax hike.
To read the rest of this story and see the photos, visit http://www.rt.com/news/spanish-madrid-coal-workers-918/