Nearly 100,000 protesters take to streets in Brussels to protest government’s plans to raise the retirement age and cut social services

BRUSSELS – Up to 100,000 people took to the streets in Brussels on Wednesday in protest against austerity measures imposed by the right-wing government of Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel.

Belgium’s three largest unions — the Christian union ACV, the socialist union ABVV and the liberal ACLVB — organized the protest against an increase of the retirement age, cuts in social services and tax measures.

Images appearing on Twitter showed police deploying water cannons against the protesters.

Last year, police fired tear gas at more than 100,000 demonstrators protesting against government free-market reforms and austerity measures.