World Bulletin / News Desk
Labor unions and political parties, including the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) took part in a major rally in Istanbul’s Maltepe district.
This year the main May Day gathering was held at Maltepe coast on the Anatolian side of Istanbul rather than in Taksim Square -- a traditional rallying point on the European side.
Tight security was visible at all entrances and exits to the venues in Maltepe, Beyoglu, Sisli, and Besiktas districts; 26,174 police personnel were on duty in the city.
Participants of May Day rallies carried various banners, including ones which read “Long live May 1” and “Long live our fight for freedom”.
Public transport was affected by the rallies as several roads were blocked while metro stations in Ankara and Istanbul were shut down.
In Ankara, the main May 1 events were held at Anadolu Square. Around 4,500 police officers backed by helicopters were on duty.
The march in the capital began from Ataturk Culture Center in Kazim Karabekir Street and later it culminated into an open-air meeting at Anadolu Square.