By Helen Pierpoint

POLICE have fired rubber bullets at miners marching through the streets of Madrid to protest over cuts.

According to witnesses the clash came after demonstrators threw fireworks, bottles and stones at riot police.

Some youths even set fire to barricades and skips lead ing police to retaliate by firing rubber bullets and charging at the protesters.

Nine people have been arrested and six people have suffered minor injuries.

The march is headed by Spanish miners who have been protesting cuts to the mining sector for months and in some cases have walked from as far as 450 km to the capital.

They were joined by friends, sympathisers and other protestors incensed by the recently-announced austerity measures, as they marched upMadrid’s main avenue to the Industry Ministry.

The miners have become riled by government plans to cut coal industry subsidies from €301 million this year to €111 euros next year.

‘’The government promised us money, and they haven’t delivered so we’re going to fight for it,’’ explained Miguel Gonzalez Rodriguez, a miner.