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Germany: Thousands Rally Against Europe-US trade Deal

Germany: Thousands Rally Against Europe-US trade Deal

Thousands of people across Germany took to the streets to protest against TTIP, the controversial transatlantic trade deal between the European Union and the United States

Press TV report: The Saturday rallies were held in several cities, including the capital Berlin, Frankfurt, Hamburg and Stuttgart, against the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) deal, a free trade agreement currently under negotiation between the EU and the US.

Anti-TTIP rallies were also held in many other European cities, including Brussels, Madrid, Helsinki, Warsaw, and Prague, on Saturday.

Opposition to the free trade agreement has recently grown in Germany. A new poll by YouGov indicated that 43 percent of people think the pact would be bad for their country, while 30 percent see it as good.

In another sign of strong resistance to the deal, one million out of the 1.7 million signatures collected in Europe against the TTIP came from Germany.

Under EU laws, a petition of more than a million signatures can force the European Commission to review the deal and hold a hearing in the European Parliament. However, the European Commission has repeatedly tried to block the review from taking place.

If passed, the deal would allow corporations to sue governments for policies they consider detrimental to their business interests. Its opponents say it would allow big businesses to overrule measures decided upon by democratically elected administrations.

“There is a very big risk: TTIP will restrict our democratic rights. In future, large corporations will have an even greater influence on the legislative process,” said Thilo Bode of consumer rights NGO foodwatch.