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Women's march

More than a million people joined women's marches around the world on Jan. 21 to protest Donald Trump's presidency. Here's what you need to know.

Demonstrators protest on the National Mall in Washington, DC, for the Women’s march on January 21, 2017.

The latest

Scenes from the Women's March on Washington

President Donald Trump took to Twitter to respond to the huge gathering.

Hillary Clinton didn't attend any of the marches but took to Twitter to thank the participants for "standing, speaking and marching for our values."

The scene

The Globe and Mail's Joanna Slater was covering the Women's March on Washington. Here's what she saw on Saturday.

The Globe's Elizabeth Renzetti was also attending the March in Washington D.C.

Globe and Mail columnist Tabatha Southey attended a sister march in downtown Toronto, one of the many held across the world.

Many Canadians who attended marches across the country were seen supporting their American counterparts.

Protesters march, in support of the Women’s March on Washington, in Toronto on Saturday, January 21, 2017. (Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press)

The crowds

The Women's March on Washington went global as millions across the world marched Saturday to send Mr. Trump an emphatic message. There were more than 600 other sister marches across the United States and the world, with around 30 alone in Canada. In Washington D.C., city officials estimated nearly 600,000 people turned out.

While speaking at the CIA headquarters on Saturday, Mr. Trump implausibly claimed that "a million, a million-and-a-half people," showed up to his swearing-in ceremony. Based on estimates by crowd scientists, around 150,000 people showed up to Mr. Trump's inauguration, far fewer than the amount of people at the National Mall on Saturday for the Women's March on Washington.

Ridership numbers on the D.C. Metro as of 11 a.m. on the day of the Women's March on Washington were also higher than the day before for Mr. Trump's inauguration. On Friday, as Mr. Trump was sworn in, ridership numbers were lower than the previous three inaugurations.

Why they marched

We ask people in the Women’s March on Washington why they wanted to protest

The celebrities, activists and politicians

If you wondered where many of Hollywood's A-list celebrities had gone during President Donald Trump's inauguration, you didn't have to wonder any longer on Saturday, when scores of them showed up at huge women's marches in Washington and other cities to send the new president a pointed message that he was in for a fight – and that, as so many signs said, women's rights are human rights.

Madonna, Julia Roberts, Scarlett Johansson, Cher, Alicia Keys, Katy Perry, Emma Watson, Amy Schumer, Jake Gyllenhaal and feminist leader Gloria Steinem were just some of those at the march in Washington, where officials said the crowd could number more than half a million.

In New York, Helen Mirren, Cynthia Nixon and Whoopi Goldberg joined a crowd of protesters marching to Trump's home at Trump Tower. In Park City, Utah, where the Sundance Film Festival was underway, TV host Chelsea Handler was joined by Charlize Theron, Kristen Stewart and more. In Los Angeles, Miley Cyrus, Jamie Lee Curtis, Demi Lovato and Jane Fonda were among tens of thousands protesting.

In the capital, a sea of pink, pointy-eared " pussyhats" mocking the new president stretched far and wide as Madonna took to the stage – and, to no one's surprise, held little back.

"Yes, I have thought an awful lot about blowing up the White House," she said. "But I know that this won't change anything. We cannot fall into despair." Instead, she called for a "revolution of love."

Madonna: ‘Good will win in the end’

The pop icon Cher, speaking in an interview backstage, said she hoped people could now mobilize against Trump the way they mobilized against the Vietnam War.

"I think people are more frightened than they've ever been," the 70-year-old singer said. "Everything that we gained, we're just watching slip away. It's not only one thing, it's everything – the progress that we made is all going away." Asked whether she thought the new president would hear the message of the march, she replied: "I don't care what he's hearing. It's important what the people are hearing. He'll hear it, but he won't pay attention."

Actress Edie Falco, of "Sopranos" and "Nurse Jackie" fame, noted: "Everyone I know is here today."

"Nothing has ever felt this important in my lifetime," she said. "We're not just going to say, 'it's OK,"' she added of Trump's agenda. "Because it's not OK."

- Jocelyn Noveck for Reuters

A demonstrator holds a sign during the Boston Women’s March in Boston, Massachusetts, U.S., on Saturday, Jan. 21, 2017.

Read more of the Globe's coverage on the Women's March on Washington