NEW YORK – Thousands of workers and immigrant laborers took to the streets Sunday to celebrate May Day, demanding rights for those “who toil in the sun” while others pocket the profits.

The message in Manhattan — delivered with bullhorns and drums — was echoed by millions of workers around the world, from Havana to Istanbul.

The burning issues were the same: more jobs, better working conditions, higher wages and decent health care.

May 1 is a traditional date for pro-labor demonstrations. Immigration advocates in the United States latched onto the celebrations in 2006.

At dozens of rallies around the country, they vowed to fight on behalf of undocumented immigrants who are being rounded up and deported.

“STOP the deportations!” read a placard in Manhattan’s Union Square, where about 1,000 people gathered at noon before marching down Broadway for a rally in downtown Foley Square.

The square is near a federal building for the New York office of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, which is in charge of removal operations involving illegal immigrants.

Underlying Sunday’s gatherings was seething anger over the rising cost of living and growing disparities between rich and poor.

In Turkey, some 200,000 protesters flooded a central plaza in Istanbul, making it the largest May Day rally there since 1977, when at least 34 people died and more than 100 were injured after shooting triggered a stampede. Turkish unions weren’t allowed back until last year.

Across Germany, some 423,000 people took to the streets to demand fair wages, better working conditions and sufficient social security, the country’s unions’ umbrella group, DGB, said.

Union group head Michael Sommer said the turnout — similar to last year’s — was a message to the government that it should give up its refusal to introduce a national minimum wage.