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Photos from demonstrations around the world on International Women's Day

Protesters hold signs at a demonstration calling for women's rights in Afghanistan in London's Parliament Square on International Women's Day on Friday.
Henry Nicholls
/
AFP via Getty Images
Protesters hold signs at a demonstration calling for women's rights in Afghanistan in London's Parliament Square on International Women's Day on Friday.

From purple flags in Kyrgyzstan to pregnancy costumes in Bangkok to a sit-in in Seoul, demonstrators worldwide filled the streets Friday to mark this year's International Women's Day.

Rallies on International Women's Day traditionally take aim at women's issues like pay equality and domestic violence, and this year's iteration was no exception. In Thailand, protesters called for longer maternity leave; in Germany, some called for better working conditions; and in London, demonstrators urged greater access to education in Taliban-controlled Afghanistan.

And some used the rallies to demand an immediate cease-fire in Gaza, where more than 30,000 Palestinians have been killed in an Israeli military campaign responding to the Hamas-led attacks on Oct. 7, according to the Gaza Health Ministry. Others called for the return of the rest of the Israeli hostages kidnapped that day, some of whom are women. (A U.N. report released earlier this week found "reasonable grounds to believe" that hostages in captivity in Gaza may be experiencing sexual violence at the hands of their captors.)

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Members of Thai labor unions and women's networks  dressed in pregnancy costumes to march to Government House on International Women's Day to draw attention to maternity rights in Bangkok, Thailand.
Lauren DeCicca / Getty Images
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Getty Images
Members of Thai labor unions and women's networks dressed in pregnancy costumes to march to Government House on International Women's Day to draw attention to maternity rights in Bangkok, Thailand.
Activists take part in a march on for International Women's Day in Hyderabad, Pakistan.
Akram Shahid / AFP via Getty Images
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AFP via Getty Images
Activists take part in a march on for International Women's Day in Hyderabad, Pakistan.
Activists supporting Palestinian women hold placards reading "Free Palestinian women!" during a rally to mark International Women's Day in downtown Seoul.
Jung Yeon-je / AFP via Getty Images
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AFP via Getty Images
Activists supporting Palestinian women hold placards reading "Free Palestinian women!" during a rally to mark International Women's Day in downtown Seoul.
Supporters of the groups Hostages and Missing Families Forum and Bring Them Home Now hold portraits of missing and kidnapped Israeli girls and women during a demonstration outside the South African parliament in Cape Town to mark International Women's Day.
/ AFP via Getty Images
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AFP via Getty Images
Supporters of the groups Hostages and Missing Families Forum and Bring Them Home Now hold portraits of missing and kidnapped Israeli girls and women during a demonstration outside the South African parliament in Cape Town to mark International Women's Day.
A woman activist tries to push back a riot police officer who blocked their march towards the Malacanang Palace during a protest to mark International Women's Day in Manila.
Ted Aljibe / AFP via Getty Images
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AFP via Getty Images
A woman activist tries to push back a riot police officer who blocked their march towards the Malacanang Palace during a protest to mark International Women's Day in Manila.
People demonstrate for better living and working conditions for women on International Women's Day in Berlin.
Christian Mang / AFP via Getty Images
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AFP via Getty Images
People demonstrate for better living and working conditions for women on International Women's Day in Berlin.
Demonstrators protest against femicide outside the City Council on International Women's Day in Rio de Janeiro.
Silvia Izquierdo / AP
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AP
Demonstrators protest against femicide outside the City Council on International Women's Day in Rio de Janeiro.
Women march on International Women's Day in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.
Vladimir Voronin / AP
/
AP
Women march on International Women's Day in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.

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Becky Sullivan has reported and produced for NPR since 2011 with a focus on hard news and breaking stories. She has been on the ground to cover natural disasters, disease outbreaks, elections and protests, delivering stories to both broadcast and digital platforms.