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Hundreds of Poles "occupy" the streets of Warsaw, protest against the government

Hundreds of Poles "occupy" the streets of Warsaw, protest against the

Hundreds of thousands of protesters have gathered in Warsaw in one of Poland's biggest demonstrations since the fall of communism in 1989.

Most opposition parties have called on supporters to join the march against the nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) party, led by Jaroslaw Kaczynski, the BBC reports .

Among those present are former Prime Minister Donald Tusk and former President Lech Walesa.

PiS has condemned the rally as a "hate march".

The Warsaw mayor's office estimated that half a million people attended the event, which marked the 34th anniversary of Poland's first partially free elections.

Many traveled from across the country to take part, and simultaneous demonstrations have been held in other Polish cities such as Krakow.

A variety of issues brought the protests together, including frustrations over inflation, living costs, and rights for women and LGBT.

Concerns have also been raised against the new law accused of undermining Poland's democracy.

The law, criticized by the EU and US, sets up a commission to investigate undue Russian influence in Polish politics and has the power to ban people from holding public office for 10 years.

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