The demonstrators’ demands were as loud as they were clear: “Stop TTIP,” they shouted. Many carried banners, stating “No sellout” and “Human rights before trade rights.”
Over the weekend, tens of thousands of people across Europe protested the planned free trade agreement with the United States, known as TTIP, last weekend.
In Germany, the largest demonstration in Munich rallied about 15,000 people on Saturday, according to the organization Attac. Protesters took to the streets in Berlin, Stuttgart and Karlsruhe as well.
“I find it very inspiring that trade policy is garnering this type of far-reaching, heated debate,” E.U. Commissioner for Trade, Cecilia Malmström wrote in her blog last Friday, but without outright reference to the global “action day” opponents had called for the next day.
The growing distrust of the planned trade treaty is fueled by how complex and piecemeal the negotiations are. Official information on TTIP remains so vague as to accommodate all sorts of apprehensions.
Today, the ninth round of TTIP negotiations begin in the United States.
Not a single chapter of the treaty has been finalized so far, as the U.S. and the E.U. Commission, the executive arm of the European Union entrusted with the talks, disagree over many points.