People around the world held rallies to show solidarity with the massive Women’s March on Washington, which drew an estimated 3 million protesters across the United States on President Donald Trump’s second day in office.
Demonstrators took part in 637 different marches from European capitals to major cities in Asia and Africa to support the original march in opposing Trump’s agenda and upholding women’s rights and human rights in general.
In Washington, half a million people descended on the National Mall and nearby streets Saturday for the historic march, by far eclipsing the turnout for Trump’s inauguration the day before, city officials said.
The march, which began with a Facebook call by a Hawaiian grandmother in the aftermath of Trump’s election victory in November, spurred similar rallies in major cities across the country.
Organizers said the movement seeks to raise awareness of women’s rights and other civil rights, that many Americans fear could be under threat by the new president.
Metro trains into downtown Washington were packed with people headed to the march. Transit authorities said nearly 600,000 people had used the city’s Metro system by 16:00.
More than 600 “sister marches” had also been planned around the US in solidarity with those marching on Washington. Some of the largest rallies were held in Boston, New York, Chicago and Los Angeles.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s office said Saturday night that at least 400,000 protesters had converged in Manhattan, while organizers in Boston and Chicago each said they had some of the largest turnouts in the nation.
The Los Angeles Police Department estimated that the march drew half a million protesters to the city’s Pershing Square, a number that rivals the crowd on the National Mall. Organizers said the turnout was even higher than the official estimate.
Some demonstrators said participating in a march that has gone global was an antidote to the depression they felt on Friday when Trump, a billionaire businessman with no political or military experience, took the oath of office on the steps of the US Capitol.
Organizers of the marches in Seattle, Denver and Portland all claimed more than 100,000 protesters had participated.
Marches drew some 20,000 people in Houston and Phoenix each. Other cities inducing Tucson, Sacramento, Kansas City, New Orleans, Charlotte, Nashville, Raleigh, Miami and Olympia each saw about 10,000 demonstrators on their streets.
Trump’s fiery rhetoric during his presidential campaign angered many liberals at home and abroad. The real estate tycoon repeatedly made disparaging remarks about women, Muslims and immigrants.
Demonstrations against Trump’s presidency were held in Canada, Australia, the UK, Germany, Japan, France, India, Kenya and Ghana among others.
Protest organizers in the UK said more than 100,000 flooded London’s Trafalgar Square, chanting “dump Trump” and waving banners calling for equal rights for all.
Similar protests also took place across the UK in Belfast, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Lancaster, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Bristol and Shipley.
In Canada, thousands gathered in cities and towns across the country to show solidarity with the march in Washington.
Several thousand people marched to the US embassy in Stockholm, the Swedish capital, carrying signs that read, “Tiny hands off the nukes,” and “Love not hate makes America great.”