Thousands Block Belgrade Highway in Protest Over Land Laws.

Thousands of people blocked a section of highway through Serbia's capital, Belgrade, Saturday, in protest against new laws environmentalists say will let foreign companies exploit local resources.

READ MORE: Serbia's government has offered mining rights to two companies, China's Zijin copper miner and Rio Tinto. Green activists say the projects will pollute land and water in the Balkan nation.

The protest is a headache for the ruling Peoples' Progressive Party led by the President Aleksandar Vucic ahead of parliamentary and presidential elections next year.

Thousands gathered on the main bridge in the capital, Belgrade, chanting "Rio Tinto go away from the Drina River."

They held banners reading: "Stop investors, save the nature, We are not giving away the nature in Serbia," and "For the land, the water and the air."

Roadblocks have been set up all over Serbia including the second largest city of Novi Sad in western Serbia, in Sabac, Uzice, and Nis in the south and in Zajecar in the east.

"The reason (for the protest) is to protect our land, water and air. We do not want it to be sold cheaply," said Stefan, a student protesting in Belgrade.

LINK: www.voanews.com/a/thousands-block-roads-across-serbia-in-anti-government-protest/6339481.html

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