0743 GMT January 18, 2019
Hundreds of buses transported demonstrators from across the country for the ‘Macedonia is Greek’ demonstration. Tens of thousands assembled in the city center, with organizers claiming more than one million people would take to the streets, Al Jazeera reported.
‘Hands off Macedonia,' they chanted.
‘Macedonia belongs to Greece,’ others yelled.
The demonstration comes two weeks after an estimated 300,000 people gathered in the northern coastal city of Thessaloniki to voice their opposition to the negotiations.
White-and-blue flags fluttered above, and throngs of demonstrators wearing traditional Macedonian garb marched in anger.
As that rally came to a close, anarchist counter-demonstrators clashed with police, and far-right protesters lit an anarchist squat on fire.
Assailants later vandalized a Holocaust monument.
Before Sunday's rally in Athens, activists carried out security patrols to protect dozens of squats in the city center from potential attacks.
Nasim Lomani, an activist at the City Plaza squat, which provides residence to upwards of 350 refugees and migrants, said extra security precautions were taken.
"All the squats are ready to protect themselves in case of any fascist attack," he told Al Jazeera. "There are fascists coming from all over Greece so we have to be careful."