Police forces stand next to a car fire during a demonstration of farmers on September 7, 2015 in Brussels, as European agriculture ministers hold an extraordinary meeting at the European Council. AFP PHOTO/JOHN THYS
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Belgian police on Monday fired tear gas and water cannon at protesting European farmers as the EU said it would release 500 million euros ($557 million) in emergency funds to help ease the pressure.The European Commission, the executive of the 28-nation EU, said it was "well aware of the difficult situation" faced by farmers, as it announced the plan to immediately release 500 million euros in funds for them.In July, the EU extended until next year a multi-million euro aid package to help struggling European farmers hit by Russian sanctions over the Ukraine crisis.Police said the protest involved around 7,000 farmers and 1,455 tractors, while the farm associations Copa and Cogeca put the figures at more than 6,000 farmers and 2,000 tractors.
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