Japan's Trade Union Confederation held its 80th annual May Day rally in a Tokyo Park drawing nearly 36,000 regular and temporary workers, the Japan Times reports.
The workers carried banners calling for wage increases and job security.
In Turkey police used tear gas and water cannons to prevent hundreds of leftists from marching to Taksim Square, Today's Zaman reported.
Turkey last week declared May Day a public holiday but the government rejected demands by unions that workers be allowed to celebrate at the square, citing security concerns.
In London, May Day protesters targeted the Bank of England in scenes reminiscent of the G20 protests, politics.co.uk reported.
Labor unions in France planned hundreds of marches throughout the country. Polls indicate 72 percent of French people are in favor of May Day demonstrations, France 24 reported Friday.This year marked the first time eight main French labor unions showed a united front by marching together.