International Labor Day was celebrated in Serbia with worker's protests against the government's announced austerity measures.
Two unions, the Alliance of Independent Unions of Serbia (SSSS) and union "Independence" organized a mass protest of workers on May Day in the center of Belgrade marking the 128th anniversary since the Chicago workers undertook labor demonstration on May 4, 1886, at Haymarket Square.
Several thousand workers gathered at the Nikola Pasic Square in Belgrade, where the union leaders told them they will have to oppose to the austerity measures and privatization that were announced by the newly elected government of Serbia.
"It has come to the point that most of us have a salary of 200 euros, that often we don't receive that salary, that factories are destroyed, work places are lost, and that we don't have where and what to work", said Ljubisav Orbovic, president of the Alliance of Independent Unions of Serbia.
He said that Serbia will profit nothing from the privatization of public companies, but will lose work places and see the increase of prices of electricity and other utilities.
"We have to stand against that, and fight for what is left over", Orbovic said.
Several thousand protesters marched to Slavija Square where they laid wreaths at the monument dedicated to Dimitrije Tucovic, prominent leader and theorist of the socialist movement in the Kingdom of Serbia.
Wreaths were previously laid there by the newly elected foreign minister Ivica Dacic, energy minister Aleksandar Antic, representatives of the Police Union of Serbia, Union Sloga, and others.
Laying a wreath at the monument, Dacic, newly elected foreign minister and deputy PM said that the high level of worker's rights cannot be achieved before the country makes economic growth, adding that "it is important to make a consensus as wide as possible within the social dialogue."