A general strike over austerity measures has shut down air, land and sea transport and hit other public services across Italy.
Workers for the state railway, city transit systems and ferry services all went on strike, joined by hospital workers, postal employees and bank staff.
CGIL union leader Susanna Camusso led a march through Rome. She called the austerity measures unjust and irresponsible, saying they mainly hurt public sector workers.
Unions claim the spending cuts and new taxes will fail to spur job creation.
Investors have been unsettled by the bickering among Premier Silvio Berlusconi’s allies on how to enforce the austerity measures and meet a pledge to balance the budget by 2013.