Hundreds of Philippine riot police clashed with about 1,000 activists on the last day of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting in Manila.
Protesters chanted slogans such as "Junk APEC!" and waved banners as they advanced against the police barricade. They also torched a vulture effigy:
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The police used water cannons and canes to disperse the crowd that was trying to disrupt the convention just about a kilometer away.
— DZMM TeleRadyo (@DZMMTeleRadyo) November 19, 2015
World leaders including U.S. President Barack Obama, Chinese President Xi Jinping and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe are in the capital for the meeting this week.
APEC is a forum of 21 member countries, most in the Asia-Pacific, that accounts for nearly half of world trade, and aims to promote free trade between its members. Besides nations such as Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, China, Mexico, the U.S. and Canada are also members.
Much of the opposition to the APEC summit has come from pro-labor groups that say APEC's objectives put rich countries ahead of developing nations.
— Rex Remitio (@RexCNNPH) November 19, 2015
Some of the protesters are from the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (New Patriotic Alliance), a Filipino left-wing group demanding that leaders rework their policies to put national interest ahead of corporate profits.
Protest leader Renato Reyes told the Associated Press that over the past two decades "APEC and imperialist globalization have only benefited the rich countries while further impoverishing developing countries like the Philippines."
"These demonstrations will not stop, even if it means we have to go head-to-head against the entire police force and we have to break through all the barriers," said Charisse Bernadine Banez, chairperson of the League of Filipino Students activist group.
The police reportedly deployed some 30,000 troops in Manila ahead of the summit, in anticipation of local pushback. Authorities have also shut several roads and highways in the already frequently congested capital, in order to allow the world leaders to get to the meetings more smoothly.
Philippine National Police spokesperson Wilben Mayor told reporters that at least one policeman was injured in Thursday's clash, and urged protesters to cease demonstrations.