Gauteng Community Safety MEC Sizakele Nkosi-Malobane on Tuessday reassured the public that student l.
MACAU - Riot police fired into the air and clashed with protesters in Macau while Turkish security forces deployed teargas and water cannons in Istanbul as May Day rallies turned violent yesterday.
In rare scenes of civil unrest, police in Macau opened fire with what were thought to be starter pistols after a crowd of 1000 broke through police cordons lining the march route.
Officers scuffled with demonstrators protesting about labour conditions who then marched towards government buildings before being penned back.
There was also May Day trouble in Istanbul, where police arrested more than 100 people, including trade union leaders.
Public transport was paralysed in the city of more than 12million as the authorities blocked roads, cancelled ferry services and closed metro stations to prevent protestors defying a ban on demonstrations.
Much of the global political focus, however, was on whether Cuba's ailing leader Fidel Castro would make his first public appearance at May Day events.
In Macau, the protests started peacefully with demonstrators calling on the government to implement laws to reduce the number of illegal workers.
But the mood soured and witnesses said they saw police dragging several protesters from the crowd by the hair.
There were also reports that police had fired live rounds.
Security forces across Asia and other parts of the world, including Turkey, had braced for violence at May Day rallies often used as a vehicle for protest.
In Manila, riot police fanned out as 5000 people waving red banners with the communist gold hammer and sickle were blocked from marching on the palace of President Gloria Arroyo.
In Thailand, about 10000 workers marched in Bangkok, railing against the military-backed government, demanding a return to democracy.
Ministerial spokesman Khieu Sopheak said: "Because of the holiday, terrorists or other offenders might cause trouble, so we have to be on the alert."
Tens of thousands of workers assembled across Indonesia and 30000 police were deployed in Jakarta in case of trouble.
In Russia, thousands rallied from Vladivostok to Moscow demanding higher salaries and pensions. - Sapa-AFP