Spanish women go on nationwide strike in Women's Day first

Women were participating in Spain's first-ever nationwide "feminist strike" to mark International Women's Day on Thursday, with local media reporting disruptions to public transport.

More than 150 railway connections were cancelled and there was reduced metro and bus services in several cities, according to Spanish broadcasters.

Female journalists were also reported to have boycotted their work as part of the strike, which is supported by several unions.

Three hundred demonstrations were planned across Spain to mark the annual event, which raises awareness for women's rights and gender equality.

Women who are not in employment were encouraged to take part in the strike by setting aside household tasks such as cooking and cleaning under the motto, "If women strike, the world stops."

The strikers had at least one high-profile supporter in Penelope Cruz. The Spanish actress told online newspaper El Espanol that she would not be working on Thursday.

"This strike is important and more than symbolic," she told the newspaper, adding that "we are at the beginning of global change."

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