RABAT, Morocco (AP) — Moroccan police are firing water cannons at protesting teachers and beating people with truncheons amid demonstrations around the capital.

Several demonstrations were held Wednesday, exactly eight years after the birth of a Moroccan Arab Spring protest movement that awakened a spirit of activism in this North African kingdom.

Teachers' unions held a protest outside the Education Ministry in Rabat, the capital, and then tried to walk up an alley toward the nearby royal palace, prompting a crackdown.

Police officers charged protesters, beating several to the ground. Associated Press reporters saw multiple injuries, and ambulances and police cars filled the neighborhood.

The protesters, many wearing white teachers' robes, came from around Morocco to seek salary raises and promotions and protest the limited opportunities for low-ranking teachers, who earn an average of 400 euros ($454) a month.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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