Pope Benedict XVI has arrived in Madrid for a four-day visit to attend the Catholic World Youth Day festival.
Spanish authorities said a million pilgrims are expected to gather in Madrid for the event which will culminate in a mass celebrated by the pope at an airbase southwest of the capital on August 21.
The pope's visit, which comes as Spain is battling a severe economic crisis, has also sparked criticism over its cost, which is estimated at a minimum of 50 million euros ($70 million).
On Wednesday, eleven people, including two police officers were lightly injured as riot police tried to prevent demonstrators from clashing with Catholic pilgrims.
compiled from agency reports