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Link: May Day Rallies Create Tensions

By KRISTIN GAZLAY, Associated Press Writer

LONDON (AP) - Anti-capitalist protesters clashed with police Monday in central London, tearing down the golden arches of a McDonald's and spray-painting a hammer and sickle on a statue of Winston Churchill in a May Day protest.

In Berlin, a march against ``capitalism and imperialism'' Monday night erupted into violence in the Kreuzberg neighborhood, a stronghold of leftist activism. More than 100 police officers were injured as they used water cannons, tear gas and nightsticks against a crowd of 10,000 anarchists. At least three dozen leftists were arrested.

Elsewhere in Europe, the workers who are usually commemorated on May Day took a back seat to the far right, as neo-Nazis rallied in German cities and nationalist parties held demonstrations in France.

The riots erupted in London when a group broke away from a peaceful demonstration held by protesters planting seeds in front of the Houses of Parliament.

Demonstrators threw stones and other objects near Prime Minister Tony Blair's official residence at Downing Street, where a dozen officers in riot gear took up positions. The protesters then stormed a nearby branch of McDonald's, breaking windows, tearing down the large ``M'' sign and distributing food.

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