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Pedro Armestre

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2011 was a year of global tumult, marked by widespread social and political uprisings, economic crises, and a great deal more. We saw the fall of multiple dictators, welcomed a new country (South Sudan), witnessed our planet's population grow to 7 billion, and watched in horror as Japan was struck by a devastating earthquake, a tsunami, and a nuclear disaster. From the Arab Spring to Los Indignados to Occupy Wall Street, citizens around the world took to the streets in massive numbers, protesting against governments and financial institutions, risking arrest, injury, and in some cases their lives. Collected here is Part 1 of a three-part photo summary of the last year, covering 2011's first several months. Be sure to also see Part 2, and Part 3 of the series - totaling 120 images in all. [40 photos + 1 more]

A wave approaches Miyako City from the Heigawa estuary in Iwate Prefecture after the magnitude 9.0 earthquake struck the area March 11, 2011. The earthquake, the most powerful ever known to have hit Japan, combined with the massive tsunami, claimed more than 15,800 lives, devastated many eastern coastline communities, and triggered a nuclear catastrophe at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power station. (Reuters/Mainichi Shimbun)

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There are many forms of protest, many ways to express an objection to particular events, situations, policies, and even people.  Protests can also take many forms - from individual statements to mass demonstrations - both peaceful and violent. In the last 30 days, there have been numerous protests across the globe in many countries.  The following post is a collection of only some of those protests, but the images convey a gamut of emotions as citizens stand up for their political, economic, religious and lifestyle rights.  -- Paula Nelson (51 photos total)
As protesters sleep in Zuccotti Park, N.Y. police officers receive instructions. A group of activists calling themselves Occupy Wall Street targeted the Financial District for more than a week of demonstrations in late September. The group said they sought to bring attention to corporate malfeasance, social inequality, and the yawning gap in income between America's rich and poor. (Eduardo Munoz/Reuters)

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ROADSIDE SHOE STALL: A boy sat in between rows of plastic slippers for sale at a roadside stall in Quetta, Pakistan, Tuesday. (Naseer Ahmed/Reuters)

CHATTING IT UP: A protester pretended to talk on a cellphone during a demonstration near Bay Area Rapid Transit police officers in a San Francisco subway station Monday. BART shut down wireless towers in stations on Aug. 11 to restrict cellphone service in order to ward off protests. (David Paul Morris/Bloomberg)

A LAUGHING MATTER? A woman gave confession to a priest at one of the 200 temporary confessionals set up at Madrid’s Buen Retiro Park on Tuesday. Hundreds of thousands of pilgrims will gather in Madrid for a giant open-air Mass, launching a six-day youth party. (Pedro Armestre/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images)

LOCKED IN: A supporter of activist Anna Hazare wore a symbolic lock during a rally against government corruption in New Delhi Tuesday. Police ordered the release of Mr. Hazare, who was arrested for planning a public hunger strike, but he refused to leave prison until he was allowed to continue with his protest, his aide said. (Adnan Abidi/Reuters)

SHEEP NOTES: Anna Hopkins of Westfield, Ind., prepared her paperwork before showing her sheep at the Indiana State Fair in Indianapolis Tuesday. (Darron Cummings/Associated Press)

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Those mad adrenaline- (and sometimes alcohol-) infused half-mile dashes dodging 1,800-pound stampeding bulls have begun through the streets of Pamplona, Spain. Part-spectacle, part-tradition, the Running of the Bulls is the most celebrated slice of the nine-day San Fermin Festival. In addition to the daily runs, events include bullfighting and a parade featuring a statue of Pamplona\'s first bishop, St. Fermin. Pleads for safety and prayers of thanksgiving to St. Fermin traditionally begin and end the run through the streets, which was famously depicted in Ernest Hemingway\'s \"The Sun Also Rises.\" Concluding on the 14th of July every year, attendees gather on the town hall plaza at midnight for singing by candlelight.(40 photos total)
Spanish bull fighter Alberto Aguilar looks at a Dolores Aguirre Ybarra\'s ranch fighting bull during a bullfight at San Fermin fiestas in Pamplona northern Spain, Saturday July 9 (Alvaro Barrientos/Associated Press)

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WAITING FOR FOOD: Women lined up to receive food being distributed in a camp for internally displaced people in the southern Sudan village of Mayan Abun Thursday. Tens of thousands of southern Sudanese fled heavy fighting in the hotly contested border area of Abyei earlier this week. (Pete Muller/Associated Press)

FORMER FUGITIVE: A boy walked past graffiti showing Ratko Mladic, the Bosnian Serb general accused of directing the 1995 Srebrenica massacre of some 8,000 Muslim men, in Serbia Thursday. Gen. Mladic was captured Thursday after a decade and a half on the run from an indictment for genocide. (Andrej Cukic/Associated Press)

LOOKING FOR SOMETHING: Angie Elbert looked for items to salvage Thursday from her grandmother’s house in Joplin, Mo., which was destroyed when a massive tornado passed through the town Sunday, killing at least 125 people. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

ARMS OUTSTRETCHED: Kashmiri Muslims raised their hands as a head priest, unseen, displayed a relic believed to be a hair from the beard of the Prophet Mohammad, during special prayers Thursday at a shrine on the outskirts of Srinagar, India, on the anniversary of the death of Abu Bakr Siddiq, the first Caliph of Islam. (Dar Yasin/Associated Press)

COVERED OVER: Volcanic ash from the eruption of the Grimsvötn volcano near Vik, Iceland, covered thick moss Thursday. Earlier in the week, ash clouds forced airport closures and hundreds of flight cancellations in Britain, Germany and elsewhere in northwestern Europe. (Lucas Jackson/Reuters)

PLANE CRASH: The wreckage of a small chartered plane lay on the roof of a building in Faridabad, India, Thursday. The plane was being used to ferry a patient to a New Delhi hospital when it crashed Wednesday in a residential neighborhood, killing 10 people, government officials said. (Zuma Press)

OUCH: The Florida Marlins’ Scott Cousins, top, collided with San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey (in white) on a fly ball from Emilio Bonifacio during the 12th inning of a baseball game in San Francisco Wednesday. Cousins was safe for the go-ahead run, and Florida won 7-6. (Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press)

TAKING A REST: A man slept in Puerta del Sol square in Madrid Thursday during a demonstration against Spain’s economic crisis and high jobless rate. (Pedro Armestre/AFP/Getty Images)

UP IN THE STANDS! Cricket fans dressed in superhero outfits drank as rain delayed the start of play on the first day of the first Test cricket match between England and Sri Lanka at the Swalec Stadium in Cardiff, Wales, Thursday. (Ian Kingston/AFP/Getty Images)

CHICKENS COME FIRST: A man unloaded live chickens from a truck at a wholesale poultry market in Mumbai Thursday. Food inflation in India accelerated in the week ended May 14, diminishing hopes of any near-term relief for consumers from red-hot prices and raising pressure on the central bank. (Danish Siddiqui/Reuters)

WHERE THERE WAS WATER: A man walked Thursday on a river shoal that appeared after the water level of the Yangtze River dropped, near Wuhan, China. China’s worst drought in a half-century is deepening, with millions in the Yangtze River region without enough drinking water. (Reuters)

G-8 SUMMIT: French police forces stood guard on the beach in Deauville, France, Thursday during the Group of Eight summit. G-8 leaders expressed confidence in the rebounding global economy and said they were working on an ambitious aid program for “Arab Spring” countries. (Joel Saget/AFP/Getty Images)

BORDER CROSSING: A Palestinian woman waited to cross into Egypt through the Rafah border terminal in the southern Gaza Strip Thursday. Egypt’s caretaker government said it will permanently open its border with the Gaza Strip on Saturday. (Said Khatib/AFP/Getty Images)

REUSE AND RECYCLE: A boy collected recyclable material from mounds of uncollected trash that have been a major cause of flooding during the rainy season at a riverside community in Quezon City, Philippines, Thursday. (Rolex Dela Pena/European Pressphoto Agency)

FISH FILES: A worker arranged fish for sale at the Baho market in Yangon, Myanmar, Thursday. (Khin Maung Win/Associated Press)

APPLE BASKETS: A vendor loaded baskets of apples onto a truck at a wholesale market in Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China, Thursday. (Sean Yong/Reuters)

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MANGLED: A sign ripped from a building lay on the ground Tuesday in Joplin, Mo., days after a tornado tore through the city, killing at least 116 people and destroying structures. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)

TENT CITY: A demonstrator smoked a cigarette outside her tent as protesters occupied Puerta del Sol Square in Madrid Tuesday. Protesters have occupied the square to rally against Spain’s economic crisis after Sunday’s local elections saw the ruling Socialists lose. (Pedro Armestre/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images)

UP IN THE AIR: President Barack Obama and Britain’s Prime Minister David Cameron played table tennis at the Globe Academy in London Tuesday. Mr. Obama will attend a state dinner hosted by Queen Elizabeth II and he will deliver a speech to Parliament at Westminster Hall Wednesday, making him the first U.S. president to do so. (Paul Hackett/Associated Press)

SHIELDED: A farmer wore protective goggles and a mask in Kirkjubaejarklaustur, Iceland, Tuesday. About 500 flights were expected to be canceled across Europe Tuesday due to ash from Iceland’s erupting Grímsvötn volcano. (Ingolfur Juliusson/Reuters)

CORN QUALITY CONTROL: Workers checked the quality of corn in Puebla, Mexico, Monday. (Alberto Millares/Demotix)

UNION BUSTING: Workers from Yoosung Enterprise, a Hyundai Motor supplier, were arrested during a strike at a factory in Asan, South Korea, Tuesday. They went on strike after wage talks broke down. Hyundai said the dispute is causing production problems for it and Kia Motors. (Lee Myung Ik/European Pressphoto Agency)

TENDING TO HIS BROTHER: A man attended to his brother, who was injured with dozens of other people when a roadside bomb detonated in Kandahar, Afghanistan, Tuesday. About 10 Afghan construction workers were killed in the incident. (Ahmad Nadeem/Reuters)

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BOXED IN: Protesters rallied against Spain’s economic crisis and its high jobless rate at the Puerta del Sol Square in Madrid Sunday. The Popular Party trounced the Socialists in local elections Sunday. (Pedro Armestre/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images)

TRACING HIS ROOTS: President Barack Obama jokingly swung a hurley, a stick used in the sport of hurling, as Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny looked on in Dublin Monday. Mr. Obama, whose great-great-great-grandfather on his mother’s side is Irish, is on a four-nation European tour. (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)

SAFETY CHECK: A U.S. Marine secured wrist restraints on a detainee arrested in an operation in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, Monday. (Massoud Hossaini/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images)

WINDSHIELD WIPER: A man cleaned ash from the erupting Grimsvötn volcano off his car in Kirkjubaejarklaustur, Iceland, Monday. Icelandair Group said if there are no more eruptions, the country’s main Keflavik International Airport will reopen and flights will be back on schedule Tuesday. (Vilheldm Gunnarsson/European Pressphoto Agency)

PROCEEDING WITH CAUTION: Lynn Mosley carefully stepped over downed power lines in Minneapolis Monday. A tornado that ripped a path from suburban St. Louis Park, Minn., through north Minneapolis killed one person and injured at least 29. (Jerry Holt/The Star Tribune via Associated Press)

EXHUMED: Authorities carried the coffin of former Chilean President Salvador Allende in Santiago, Chile, Monday. The deposed leader’s remains were exhumed for an autopsy to determine whether he committed suicide or was assassinated during the 1973 military coup that ousted him. (Ian Salas/European Pressphoto Agency)

BEACH PATROL: Mounted police patrolled a beach near beachgoers Monday ahead of the G8 summit in Deauville, France. (Pascal Rossignol/Reuters)

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