World

In pictures: May Day celebrated around the world

Every year May Day is used to mark many things - from the coming of spring in the Northern Hemisphere to the fight for workers' rights.

Here are some of the events that have taken place to mark the day from Indonesia to Mexico.

People celebrate May Day with flags, balloons, music and dancing on Red Square in Moscow Image copyright AFP

Thousands of people gathered in cities across Russia for what is a major public holiday. The largest celebration took place in Moscow's Red Square.

A boy watches the celebrations in Moscow Image copyright AFP

This boy was particularly enthralled by the traditional costumes, balloons and flags on display.

Indonesian activists and workers are blocked by police as they take part in a protest to mark May Day Image copyright AFP

Workers held a protest march in the Indonesian capital of Jakarta. May Day has long been associated with workers' rights in many parts of the world. But there were sporadic clashes between demonstrators and police during the Jakarta rally.

Migrant workers are seen wearing blindfolds and wearing cardboard signs during the May Day rally in Hong Kong Image copyright Getty Images

There was also a May Day protest by migrant workers in Hong Kong.

A protester speaks through a megaphone as smoke from coloured smoke bombs billows near people taking part in the annual May Day rally in Strasbourg Image copyright AFP

Rallies were held in major cities across France, where trade unions hold traditional parades on May Day. This image shows marchers in Strasbourg.

Police detain a protester after marching on Taksim Square to celebrate May Day in Istanbul, Turkey May 1, 2019 Image copyright Reuters

Police in Turkey prevented demonstrators from marching on Istanbul's Taksim Square.

Protesters hold a puppet of Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa during a rally in Lisbon Image copyright PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA

In Lisbon, Portugal, protesters carried a giant puppet depicting Prime Minister Antonio Costa.

Workers, organised by South Africa's largest union, the Congress of South African Trade Unions, protest on May 1 Image copyright Getty Images

In South Africa workers took part in a rally north of Durban that was organised by the country's largest trade union.

Cuban soldiers shout slogans during a May Day rally Image copyright Reuters

Cuban soldiers held in large parade in Havana. Former President Raul Castro was among those attending.

Juan Guaido attends a rally in Venezuela Image copyright AFP

Venezuela's opposition leader Juan Guaido addressed a rally in Caracas. He had called for a massive protest to increase pressure on President Nicolás Maduro.

Members of the 'D"Leonhardstoana' costume group wear traditional dresses as they dance during the maypole festival in southern Germany Image copyright Getty Images

But the day is not a political event for everyone. In southern Germany, the annual maypole festival features traditional dancing and music.

Chinese military police stand guard as people visit the promenade on the Bund Image copyright Getty Images

In China, May Day marks a national holiday where people often travel. In this image, Chinese paramilitary police stand guard while people visit the promenade on the Bund in Shanghai.

May Day parade in Dakha Image copyright NurPhoto

In Bangladesh, traditional musicians participated in a rally in the capital Dakha.

The Thieving Magpie Morris Side (Morris Dancers) during their "Dance in the Dawn" to mark May Day in Yorkshire, England Image copyright PA

In Britain, too, the day is seen by some as an opportunity to show off a traditional form of dance. These Morris dancers managed to catch the sunrise in Yorkshire.

All images subject to copyright.