(BBC) Tens of thousands of people from across Italy have marched in Rome to demand labour market and pension reforms.
Waving red flags, the demonstrators demanded the government of Romano Prodi guarantee better rights for workers.
The rally was organised by the radical left, which is part of the governing coalition. It said the protest was not aimed against the prime minister.
But correspondents say Mr Prodi fears the march will further weaken his left-wing majority in parliament.
He called on his ministers to stay away from the demonstration.
Italy's right-wing opposition was quick to capitalise on what it sees as cracks in the governing coalition, and is predicting that the government will fall next month.