Police fought pitched battles, charging at the demonstrators and using water cannons and tear gas, trying and failing to keep them away from the EU legislature building.
Earlier in the day, dockers in yellow vests set off smoke bombs and waved banners saying "Victory to the dockers" during a defiant march through the city center. Accompanied by marching bands, protesters set cars on fire. Police fired pepper gas into the crowds and the port workers returned fire with flares, canisters, glasses and stones. At least a dozen of the body armour clad robo-cops suffered minor injuries, if the parliament's press service is to be believed.
Over 6,000 workers from all major European ports, including Liverpool, Rotterdam, Antwerp, and Hamburg. Apparently people also came from as far as Australia and the United States to take part in the massive protests organized by several trade unions.
While this was going on, workers closed down cargo handling in Antwerp, Belgium Europe's second biggest port and also in Portugal, Germany and Denmark and Sweden.
It seems that victory is at hand with newspapers reporting that the European Parliament is likely to reject the proposed plans to liberalize cargo handling at EU seaports this coming Wednesday, two years since last defeating related legislation.