May Day protests are taking place on the streets of Europe, Turkey Tokyo, Jakarta, Moscow and Bangladesh, as people around the world mark International Workers' Day.

In Greece, a general strike by the two largest trade unions, GSEE and ADEDY, in protest against the tough austerity measures are severely disrupting public services, including hospitals and transport.

Ferries and trains are at a standstill and hospital staff have walked out as hundreds of Greeks gather on the streets protesting against the highest unemployment in the EU.

international workers day greece

greece

As many as 59% of young people are out of work in Greece

According to statistics released on Wednesday, 27.2% of Greece's workforce are unemployed, and 59.1% of the under-25 age group are out of work, seeking employment. It follows a bill approved by parliament on Sunday which will leave 15,000 civil servants out of work by the end of next year.

Alexis Tsipras, the head of the Syriza opposition party, joined the thousands workers marching through Athens, holding banners.

One sign calls for solidarity with foreign workers, the plight of which hit the headlines last month after farm foreman opened fire on a group of migrant strawberry workers who were protesting after not being paid for six months. As many as 29 strawberry pickers, mostly Bangladeshi immigrants, were injured in the attack with seven taken to hospital.

Police in Spain are also bracing for anti-austerity protests after rioting on the streets last year.

In Turkey, riot police clashed with thousands of May Day protesters in Istanbul firing water cannon and tear gas at crowds in Istanbul. Trade Unions had already been banned from demonstrating in the main square after May Day clashes between police and protesters in previous years. Several people have been injured after tear gas was used.

may day protest

may day protest

may day protest

There have been violent clashes in Turkey

While In Germany Labour union representatives and other groups marched in support of fairer employment conditions and a minimum wage.

Protests were also seen on the streets of France. The unemployment rate in France rose again last month, with 3.2 million people out of work.

international workers day

international workers day

Protests took place in France

Bangladeshi garment workers are protesting on the streets of Dhaka, the nation's capital, demanding better working conditions after a building collapsed. The death toll has now passed 400 with scores more still missing. Many are demanding the death penalty for the owner of the building, who has been arrested after going on the run from police.

The factory supplied Western companies with cheap clothes, including Primark and Bonmarche. Primark have said it will pay compensation and offer emergency food aid to victims.

The Cambodian textile industry is the third largest exporter of clothes to the Western world and garment workers have rallied on the streets of Phnom Peh, the nation's capital, demanding higher wages and better working conditions.

"I demand that my pay is increased to $150 per month," one garment worker told Al Jazeera.

Trade unions have also held demonstrations in Tokyo, Japan, calling for more jobs for young people. In Hong Kong, thousands are expected to march in support of striking dock workers.

Indonesian workers dressed up as ants for Labour day or 'hari buruh'. They wore the costume, meant to symbolise their exploitation in a march to the presidential palace in Jakarta.

Some 90,000 people are expected to participate in May Day demonstrations in Moscow, in a trade union parade organised by the governing United Russia Party.

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  • A riot police officer fires as clashes erupt between police and protesters during May Day celebrations in Istanbul, Turkey, Wednesday May 1, 2013. The government, citing security reasons, banned a rally on Istanbul's Taksim Square, which is undergoing major renovations. Police fired tear gas to disperse hundreds of demonstrators trying to break through barricades to access the square. (AP Photo)

  • A protester holds a placard for the victims of the garment factory building collapse in Bangladesh, during a May Day rally in central London, Wednesday, May 1, 2013.(AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)

  • An anti-austerity protester chants slogans as she participates in a May Day rally in central London, Wednesday, May 1, 2013.(AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)

  • Protesters chant slogans as they participate in a May Day march in central London, Wednesday, May 1, 2013.(AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)

  • Protesters participate in a May Day march in central London, Wednesday, May 1, 2013.(AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)

  • A Greek, right, and an immigrant worker march hand in hand in front of the Greek parliament in Athens on May 1, 2013. About 8,000 people took part in the subdued demonstrations as austerity-weary unions held a strike for May Day. The country’s main labor unions are protesting soaring unemployment, which is the highest in the 27-country European Union, and the austerity measures the conservative-led government is enacting in return for crucial bailout loans. (AP Photo/FOSPHOTOS/Alexandros Katsis)

  • Protesters chant slogans as they participate in a May Day march in central London, Wednesday, May 1, 2013.(AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)

  • Protesters chant slogans as they participate in a May Day march in central London, Wednesday, May 1, 2013.(AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)

  • An unidentified man is arrested for shooting a water gun towards the Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt during her speech, Wednesday May 1, 2013 at Tangkroen in Aarhus, Denmark. Thorning-Schmidt met with strong protests during her May Day speech. (AP Photo/Polfoto/Daniel Hjort) DENMARK OUT

  • Women protesters shout slogans calling for better working conditions for garment workers during a May Day rally on Wednesday May 1, 2013 in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Thousands of garment factory workers paraded through the streets calling for safeguards to be put in place and for the owner of a building that collapsed last week in Bangladesh to be sentenced to death. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

  • A man protests against textile multinationals while he holds a photograph with the image of the textile factory destroyed in Bangladesh which has killed hundreds of workers, during the celebration of the day of workers, in Pamplona, northern Spain on Wednesday, May 1, 2013. Text reads,''El Corte Ingles, Mango, Benetton, Primark. They have the photo for a new campaign. Boycott capitalism''. (AP Photo/Alvaro Barrientos)

  • A unidentified man is arrested for shooting a water gun towards the Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt, during her speech, Wednesday May 1 2013 at Tangkroen in Aarhus, Denmark. Thorning-Schmidt was met with strong protests during her May Day speech. (AP Photo/Polfoto/Daniel Hjort) DENMARK OUT

  • A elderly man holds a poster with a picture of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, made to look like Adolf Hitler, wearing a swastika and with text reading "Greece drinks the poison" and the other ''201 euros…my pension'' in front of the Parliament during a protest in Athens on Wednesday, May 1, 2013. About 8,000 people took part in the subdued demonstrations as austerity-weary unions held a strike for May Day. The country’s main labor unions are protesting soaring unemployment, which is the highest in the 27-country European Union, and the austerity measures the conservative-led government is enacting in return for crucial bailout loans. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)

  • Protesters with motorcycles take part in a rally in Athens on Wednesday, May 1, 2013. About 8,000 people took part in the subdued demonstrations as austerity-weary unions held a strike for May Day. The country’s main labor unions are protesting soaring unemployment, which is the highest in the 27-country European Union, and the austerity measures the conservative-led government is enacting in return for crucial bailout loans. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)

  • A woman holds Greek and small Cypriot flags during a rally in front of the Parliament in Athens on Wednesday, May 1, 2013. About 8,000 people took part in the subdued demonstrations as austerity-weary unions held a strike for May Day. The country’s main labor unions are protesting soaring unemployment, which is the highest in the 27-country European Union, and the austerity measures the conservative-led government is enacting in return for crucial bailout loans. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)

  • Protesters with motorcycles take part in a rally in Athens on Wednesday, May 1, 2013. About 8,000 people took part in the subdued demonstrations as austerity-weary unions held a strike for May Day. The country’s main labor unions are protesting soaring unemployment, which is the highest in the 27-country European Union, and the austerity measures the conservative-led government is enacting in return for crucial bailout loans. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)

  • Supporters of the Lebanese Communist party, hold a banner with Arabic that reads, "our salaries are diminishing as a result of soaring prices and inflation, we want an end to waste and corruption and adopting progressive taxes," during a demonstration to mark Labor Day, in Beirut, Lebanon, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. Hundreds of Lebanese Communist party members marched to mark May Day, using the occasion to protest the worsening economic conditions in the country. (AP Photo/Bilal Hussein)

  • A Lebanese band plays music, during a rally to mark May Day, in Beirut, Lebanon, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. Hundreds of Lebanese Communist party members marched to mark May Day, using the occasion to protest the worsening economic conditions in the country. (AP Photo/Bilal Hussein)

  • A protester prepares to throw a stone as clashes erupt between police and protesters during May Day celebrations in Istanbul, Turkey, Wednesday May 1, 2013. Police fired tear gas to disperse hundreds of demonstrators trying to break through barricades to access Istanbul's Taksim Square which the government, citing security reasons, banned a rally on the square which is undergoing major renovations. (AP Photo)

  • Supporters of the Lebanese Communist party, hold a banner with Arabic that reads, "our salaries are diminishing as a result of soaring prices and inflation, we want an end to waste and corruption and adopting progressive taxes," during a demonstration to mark Labor Day, in Beirut, Lebanon, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. Hundreds of Lebanese Communist party members marched to mark May Day, using the occasion to protest the worsening economic conditions in the country. (AP Photo/Bilal Hussein)

  • Clashes erupt between police and protesters during May Day celebrations in Istanbul, Turkey, Wednesday May 1, 2013. Police fired tear gas to disperse hundreds of demonstrators trying to break through barricades to access Istanbul's Taksim Square which the government, citing security reasons, banned a rally on the square which is undergoing major renovations. (AP Photo)

  • Clashes erupt between police and protesters during May Day celebrations in Istanbul, Turkey, Wednesday May 1, 2013. Police fired tear gas to disperse hundreds of demonstrators trying to break through barricades to access Istanbul's Taksim Square which the government, citing security reasons, banned a rally on the square which is undergoing major renovations. (AP Photo)

  • Clashes erupt between police and protesters during May Day celebrations in Istanbul, Turkey, Wednesday May 1, 2013. Police fired tear gas to disperse hundreds of demonstrators trying to break through barricades to access Istanbul's Taksim Square which the government, citing security reasons, banned a rally on the square which is undergoing major renovations. (AP Photo)

  • A demonstrator uses a slingshot as clashes erupt between police and protesters during May Day celebrations in Istanbul, Turkey, Wednesday May 1, 2013. Police fired tear gas to disperse hundreds of demonstrators trying to break through barricades to access Istanbul's Taksim Square which the government, citing security reasons, banned a rally on the square which is undergoing major renovations. (AP Photo)

  • Clashes erupt between police and protesters during May Day celebrations in Istanbul, Turkey, Wednesday May 1, 2013. The government, citing security reasons, banned a rally on Istanbul's Taksim Square, which is undergoing major renovations. Police fired tear gas to disperse hundreds of demonstrators trying to break through barricades to access the square. (AP Photo)

  • Members of Indian Federation of Trade Unions shout slogans as they demand better wages and working conditions, during a protest march to observe May Day, in New Delhi, India, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

  • Taiwanese workers argue with a police officer during a protest on May Day in Taipei, Taiwan, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. More than 10,000 Taiwanese workers took to the streets in Taipei Wednesday to protest a government reform plan that will cut pension payouts to ease Taiwan's worsening fiscal problems. The protesters said the payout cuts reflect a longstanding government policy to bolster economic growth at the expense of workers' benefits and compromised workplace safety. (AP Photo/Chiang Ying-ying)

  • Taiwanese workers try to pull a road block down during a protest on May Day in Taipei, Taiwan, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. More than 10,000 Taiwanese workers took to the streets in Taipei Wednesday to protest a government reform plan that will cut pension payouts to ease Taiwan's worsening fiscal problems. The protesters said the payout cuts reflect a longstanding government policy to bolster economic growth at the expense of workers' benefits and compromised workplace safety. (AP Photo/Chiang Ying-ying)

  • Taiwanese workers shout slogans during a protest on May Day in Taipei, Taiwan, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. More than 10,000 Taiwanese workers took to the streets in Taipei Wednesday to protest a government reform plan that will cut pension payouts to ease Taiwan's worsening fiscal problems. The protesters said the payout cuts reflect a longstanding government policy to bolster economic growth at the expense of workers' benefits and compromised workplace safety. (AP Photo/Chiang Ying-ying)

  • Taiwanese workers shout slogans during a protest on May Day in Taipei, Taiwan, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. More than 10,000 Taiwanese workers took to the streets in Taipei Wednesday to protest a government reform plan that will cut pension payouts to ease Taiwan's worsening fiscal problems. The protesters said the payout cuts reflect a longstanding government policy to bolster economic growth at the expense of workers' benefits and compromised workplace safety. (AP Photo/Chiang Ying-ying)

  • A Taiwanese worker wears slogans reading "Official Compel and People Rebel Against" on his head and "Depressed" on his mask during a protest on May Day in Taipei, Taiwan, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. More than 10,000 Taiwanese workers took to the streets in Taipei Wednesday to protest a government reform plan that will cut pension payouts to ease Taiwan's worsening fiscal problems. The protesters said the payout cuts reflect a longstanding government policy to bolster economic growth at the expense of workers' benefits and compromised workplace safety. (AP Photo/Chiang Ying-ying)

  • Taiwanese workers shout slogans during a protest on May Day in Taipei, Taiwan, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. More than 10,000 Taiwanese workers took to the streets in Taipei Wednesday to protest a government reform plan that will cut pension payouts to ease Taiwan's worsening fiscal problems. The protesters said the payout cuts reflect a longstanding government policy to bolster economic growth at the expense of workers' benefits and compromised workplace safety. (AP Photo/Chiang Ying-ying)

  • Taiwanese workers try to pull a road block down during a protest on May Day in Taipei, Taiwan, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. More than 10,000 Taiwanese workers took to the streets in Taipei Wednesday to protest a government reform plan that will cut pension payouts to ease Taiwan's worsening fiscal problems. The protesters said the payout cuts reflect a longstanding government policy to bolster economic growth at the expense of workers' benefits and compromised workplace safety. (AP Photo/Chiang Ying-ying)

  • Taiwanese workers shout slogans during a protest on May Day in Taipei, Taiwan, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. More than 10,000 Taiwanese workers took to the streets in Taipei Wednesday to protest a government reform plan that will cut pension payouts to ease Taiwan's worsening fiscal problems. The protesters said the payout cuts reflect a longstanding government policy to bolster economic growth at the expense of workers' benefits and compromised workplace safety. (AP Photo/Chiang Ying-ying)

  • Taiwanese workers try to pull a road block down during a protest on May Day in Taipei, Taiwan, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. More than 10,000 Taiwanese workers took to the streets in Taipei Wednesday to protest a government reform plan that will cut pension payouts to ease Taiwan's worsening fiscal problems. The protesters said the payout cuts reflect a longstanding government policy to bolster economic growth at the expense of workers' benefits and compromised workplace safety. (AP Photo/Chiang Ying-ying)

  • Taiwanese workers try to pull a road block down during a protest on May Day in Taipei, Taiwan, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. More than 10,000 Taiwanese workers took to the streets in Taipei Wednesday to protest a government reform plan that will cut pension payouts to ease Taiwan's worsening fiscal problems. The protesters said the payout cuts reflect a longstanding government policy to bolster economic growth at the expense of workers' benefits and compromised workplace safety. (AP Photo/Chiang Ying-ying)

  • Workers and protesters holding a defaced portrait of Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing and banners reading "right of collective negotiation," "low pay subsidy" and "retire security" march to the government's office during a May Day rally in Hong Kong Wednesday, May 1, 2013. Hundreds of workers, local labor rights groups and striking dockworkers joined the annual May Day rally in Hong Kong to fight for better wages and working conditions. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

  • Workers and protesters holding banners march to the government office during a May Day rally in Hong Kong Wednesday, May 1, 2013. Hundreds of workers, local labour right group and striking dockworkers join the annual rally to demand better wages and working conditions. Chinese in the banners read: "Dignity." (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

  • Workers and protesters holding a defaced portrait of Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing and banners reading "Against importing foreign workers " march to the government's office during a May Day rally in Hong Kong Wednesday, May 1, 2013. Hundreds of workers, local labor rights groups and striking dockworkers joined the annual May Day rally in Hong Kong to fight for better wages and working conditions. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

  • Workers and protesters hold a huge banner march to the government office during a May Day rally in Hong Kong, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. Hundreds of workers, local labor right groups and striking dockworkers join the annual rally to demand better wages and working conditions. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

  • Workers and protesters holding a defaced portrait of Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing, left, and Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying, march to the government office during a May Day rally in Hong Kong Wednesday, May 1, 2013. Hundreds of workers, local labor right groups and striking dockworkers join the annual rally in Hong Kong to demand better wages and working conditions. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

  • A protester holds a defaced portrait of Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing while marching to the government's office during a May Day rally in Hong Kong Wednesday, May 1, 2013. Hundreds of workers, local labor rights groups and striking dockworkers joined the annual May Day rally in Hong Kong to fight for better wages and working conditions. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

  • Workers and protesters holding a defaced portrait of Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing and banners march to the government's office during a May Day rally in Hong Kong Wednesday, May 1, 2013. Hundreds of workers, local labor rights groups and striking dockworkers joined the annual May Day rally in Hong Kong to fight for better wages and working conditions. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

  • A young vendor watches a protester's mural depicting U.S. President Barack Obama and Philippine President Benigno Aquino III as they prepare to march closer to the U.S. Embassy in Manila to mark International Labor Day Wednesday, May 1, 2013 in Manila, Philippines. The workers, who have demanding wage increases for years, assailed Aquino for his Labor Day "gift" of non-wage benefits. The protesters have been clamoring for years for a P125-Peso ($3.125) across-the-board wage hike and condemn the Government's policy of outsourcing labor which allegedly eliminates job security. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

  • Protesters, mostly workers, are blocked by police from getting closer to the U.S. Embassy in Manila to mark International Labor Day Wednesday, May 1, 2013 in Manila, Philippines. The workers, who have demanding wage increases for years, assailed President Aquino III for his Labor Day "gift" of non-wage benefits. The protesters have been clamoring for years for a P125-Peso ($3.125) across-the-board wage hike and condemn the Government's policy of outsourcing labor which allegedly eliminates job security. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

  • Children wearing hats with slogans display a banner as they join other protesters, mostly workers, in a rally to mark International Labor Day Wednesday, May 1, 2013 in Manila, Philippines. The workers, who have demanding wage increases for years, assailed President Aquino III for his Labor Day "gift" of non-wage benefits. The protesters have been clamoring for years for a P125-Peso ($3.125) across-the-board wage hike and condemn the Government's policy of outsourcing labor which allegedly eliminates job security. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

  • Riot police block protesters as they try to march towards U.S. Embassy in Manila to mark International Labor Day Wednesday May 1, 2013 in Manila, Philippines. The workers, who have demanding wage increases for years, assailed President Aquino III for his Labor Day "gift" of non-wage benefits. The protesters have been clamoring for years for a P125-Peso ($3.125) across-the-board wage hike and condemn the Government's policy of outsourcing labor which allegedly eliminates job security. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

  • Protesters, mostly workers, run to avoid blocking police officers as they try to get closer to the U.S. Embassy in Manila to mark International Labor Day Wednesday May 1, 2013 in Manila, Philippines. The workers, who have demanding wage increases for years, assailed President Aquino III for his Labor Day "gift" of non-wage benefits. The protesters have been clamoring for years for a P125-Peso ($3.125) across-the-board wage hike and condemn the Government's policy of outsourcing labor which allegedly eliminates job security. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

  • Protesters, mostly workers, wear hats with slogans during a rally to mark International Labor Day Wednesday May 1, 2013 in Manila, Philippines. The workers, who have been demanding wage increases for years, assailed President Aquino III for his Labor Day "gift" of non-wage benefits. The protesters have been clamoring for years for a P125-Peso ($3.125) across-the-board wage hike and condemn the Government's policy of outsourcing labor which allegedly eliminates job security. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

  • Protesters, mostly workers, burn a mural depicting U.S. President Barack Obama and Philippine President Benigno Aquino III after being blocked by police from getting closer to the U.S. Embassy in Manila to mark International Labor Day Wednesday May 1, 2013 in Manila, Philippines. The workers, who have demanding wage increases for years, assailed Aquino for his Labor Day "gift" of non-wage benefits. The protesters have been clamoring for years for a P125-Peso ($3.125) across-the-board wage hike and condemn the Government's policy of outsourcing labor which allegedly eliminates job security. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

  • Protesters, mostly workers, burn a mural depicting U.S. President Barack Obama and Philippine President Benigno Aquino III after being blocked by police from getting closer to the U.S. Embassy in Manila to mark the International labor Day Wednesday, May 1, 2013 in Manila, Philippines. The workers, who have demanding wage increases for years, assailed Aquino for his Labor Day "gift" of non-wage benefits. The protesters have been clamoring for years for a P125-Peso ($3.125) across-the-board wage hike and condemn the Government's policy of outsourcing labor which allegedly eliminates job security. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)