Thousands of protesters have demonstrated on the streets of Moldova's capital, demanding that the government resign and calling for early elections.
The government building in Chisinau was encircled by a heavy police presence on April 24 that Moldova's Interior Ministry said would be sufficient to ensure public order during the protest, which was organized by the pro-European Dignity and Truth party.
The protesters claim Moldova's government is under the influence of a politically connected business class that dictates policy.
Moldova has been mired in political turmoil over the past year.
The parliament last month announced that the country will hold a presidential election on October 30, the first time the electorate will directly choose the impoverished ex-Soviet state's head of state since 2001.
Earlier in March, a court ruled in favor of having direct national elections to choose a president rather than a vote in parliament -- a concession to protesters who had demonstrated for months against the political elite.