World Bulletin / News Desk
German police said they detained 150 demonstrators in Frankfurt on Thursday during the protest against austerity policies implemented to tackle the euro zone debt crisis.
Over a thousand activists gathered in the centre of Germany's financial capital despite the ban on the demonstration, part of a four-day-long 'Blockupy' protest due to run until Saturday.
The protesters are angry at the misery they say governments are inflicting on many people with their response to the crisis, which has intensified since inconclusive elections in Greece this month fuelled concerns about its future in the euro zone.
Sirens blared across Frankfurt as police flooded the centre of the city on an otherwise quiet public holiday. Police and the activists both said the demonstration was peaceful and a Reuters reporter saw no violence at the protest.
Thursday's protest followed a legal scrap between the activists and authorities over whether the demonstrations should be allowed to go ahead. A court on Monday gave the go-ahead for a rave on Wednesday and protests on Saturday but ruled against them taking place on the other days.
On Wednesday, police removed protesters from outside the European Central Bank's Frankfurt headquarters.
The ECB is at the centre of the policy response to the crisis and has faced calls from politicians, investors and protestors to do more.
The central bank says it has already headed off a major credit crunch with unprecedented funding operations in December and February, and is putting on the onus on governments to act.
Frankfurt police have drafted in reinforcements from other German states to cope with the protests. Some 5,000 police are ready to be deployed.
Police said they stopped three coaches carrying demonstrators arriving from Berlin just outside Frankfurt on Thursday and prevented them from entering the city.
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