Women’s March protesters fill entire route in Washington, joined by protests around the world

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WASHINGTON -- There were thousands from Illinois. They came by the busload, and said it wasn’t meant to be an anti-Trump movement, but a lot people who spoke with WGN were motivated by what the president has said about women.

The crowd was so large, in a tweet, Mayor Muriel Bowser said: "Metro stations are at full capacity. So, if you're trying to get on a train please have patience."
Friday morning 190,000 trips on the metro during the inauguration. This morning 275,000 trips during the Women's March.

“I’m hoping this event is just a springboard for future activism. I think it’s long overdue,” said Amanda Drenth of Berwyn.

Initially, organizers planned for a couple hundred thousand. They got a lot more than that.

“This is just a starting point for the women’s revolution of this period. It is not the end. It is our opening party,” said Julie List, Illinois Women’s March organizer.

The massive turnout at the Women's March on Washington forced a change of plans. With the entire planned route filled with hundreds of thousands of protesters, organizers couldn't lead a formal march toward the White House. That's according to a District of Columbia official, speaking on condition of anonymity because the official isn't authorized to speak for the march.

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The official says that shortly before 1 p.m., people were standing along the entire march route. While there was no formal march led from the protest stage near the capitol, the still moved toward the Ellipse, an area of the National Mall in front of the White House.

The official says there could be more than half a million people on the mall, but it's difficult to estimate because low cloud cover is making aerial photographs impossible. There are also more than 600 "sister marches" planned around the United States, with some of the biggest expected in Boston, New York, Chicago and Los Angeles.

As speakers and musicians including Madonna filled the main stage, marchers eventually ditched the packed parade route on the mall and took to the streets.

"Mr. Trump, you are no Berliner."

That's the message that hundreds of protesters in the German capital are carrying on signs as they rally outside the U.S. Embassy in solidarity with the Women's March in Washington.

The demonstrators are peacefully protesting Trump's presidency on Pariser Platz, next to the landmark Brandenburg Gate.

Other signs include slogans such as "No to sexism," ''Women's rights are human rights," and "Our bodies, our minds, our power."

One of the protesters is Katie Berdett — an American living in Berlin. She says she fears the loss of women's rights under Trump and "for the democracy of our country."

She says, "But at the same time I'm hopeful because there are so many people standing up and rising up and taking part in these demonstrations."

President John F. Kennedy gave a famous speech in Berlin in 1963 when he said he considered himself "a Berliner" — a remark that helped keep up morale in the Western part of the then-divided city.

A couple hundred people rallied in the Czech capital of Prague on Saturday in support of the march.

In Wenceslas Square in freezing conditions, they waved the portraits of President Donald Trump and Russian leader Vladimir Putin, as well banners that read: "This is just the beginning."

Organizer Johanna Nejedlova says: "We are worried about the way some politicians talk, especially during the American elections." Similar rallies unfolded in London, Berlin, Rome and other cities.

In Copenhagen, Denmark, protesters in the march's trademark pink woolen hats met outside the U.S. Embassy. Says participant Sherin Khankan, "An alternative to the growing hatred must be created."

At a rally in Stockholm, Sweden, organizer Lotta Kuylenstjerna says "we do not have to accept his message," in a reference to Trump.


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