.- Organizers estimate that two million Spaniards took part in the March for Life on October 17 in the Spanish capital of Madrid to express opposition to a new abortion law proposed by the government of President Jose Luis Rodriquez Zapatero.
Former Spanish President Jose Maria Aznar, as well as a number of officials from his administration, were present at the event as were representatives from various religious organizations.
No Catholic bishops were in attendance.
The march began at 5 p.m. under a sunny Madrid sky, as the large crowd walked from the Puerta del Sol to the famous Puerta de Alcala carrying signs, banners, balloons and flags.
Organizers called on participants to donate one euro each to help cover the more than 130,000 euros needed to organize the march.
The massive crowd gathered at the Puerta de Alcala to listen to music and speakers, including reporter Javi Nieves, who called the march “the largest protest in the history of Spain.” Mexican actor Eduardo Verastegui addressed the crowd as well, and a period of silence was observed in memory of the victims of abortion.
The manifesto of the march, read by three pro-life leaders, urged the government to withdraw its plans to reform the country’s abortion laws, which would leave “the two victims of abortion completely unprotected: the unborn child, who would lack all legal protection, and the woman, doomed to abortion without any possible alternatives.”
Organizers said the new law “would deprive women of their right to maternity,” “would do nothing to avoid abortions and would quantitatively expand the immense failure that abortion always represents.”