Violence that broke out at what began as a peaceful protest in Rome against economic inequality is a “worrying signal for civil society,” and rioters will be identified and punished, Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi says.
About 100 people were taken to hospital for injuries suffered in Saturday's violence in the Italian capital. Police arrested about 20 people, but that number is expected to rise as investigators examine surveillance cameras.
Thousands turned up to protest in Rome — one of hundreds of cities across the globe where activists held protests inspired by the Occupy Wall Street movement — but the peaceful march was quickly hijacked by hundreds of hooded and masked protesters who hurled rocks and bottles at the police.
Some used clubs and sticks to smash shop and bank windows. Dumpsters and cars were set on fire. Police in anti-riot gear used tear gas and water canon to try to disperse the rioters.
There is much discontent in Italy over the government's failure to deal with the country's economic crisis and high unemployment. Students complain they have no future, while Italy has the second-highest debt burden in Europe after Greece.
Italy's interior ministry will be addressing parliament on Tuesday to outline a series of measures aimed at preventing similar street violence.
In New York, more than 80 people were arrested as activists made their way from the city's financial district in Lower Manhattan to Times Square. Participants in the Occupy Wall Street movement have been camped out in a Lower Manhattan park since Sept. 17 to protest finance industry bailouts.
In London, the scene of another anti-corporate rally, about 500 people remained camped out near St. Paul's Cathedral on Sunday.
Kitchens, toilets and a first aid centre have been set up, and organizers have been asking for more tents and supplies, a sign that protesters have no intention of leaving anytime soon.
Demonstrators moved from Paternoster Square near the London Stock Exchange on Saturday to the site of the cathedral, where Sunday services went ahead as usual.
The CBC's Dominic Valitis in London said police issued a call via Twitter on Saturday evening asking for people to leave in time for church services.
"This morning, protesters say a cleric from the cathedral came out on the steps. He apparently told them they have the right ot protest and he doesn't have an issue with them being there," he said.
Occupy Canada protesters in Toronto — one of 15 cities in Canada where anti-corporate rallies were held Saturday — aren't showing any signs of quitting.
They say they are going to spend the day Sunday planning their demonstrations for the coming week. A meeting was planned for 5 p.m. ET.
The Canadian experience in joining the Occupy movement has been relatively peaceful, with only a small number of arrests.
In Toronto, about 3,000 people gathered in the financial district to join a worldwide protest against corporate greed. About 100 people set up tents in the city's St. James Park. Some websites associated with the protest say they expect them to remain there for about a week.
An organizer says protesters plan to target the Toronto Stock Exchange when it opens Monday morning.