Thousands of people have turned out in Belfast in protest over cuts announced earlier this week by the British Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne.

It was one of a number of demonstrations taking place across the UK today against the government's four-year austerity plan.

The demonstration in Belfast, which ended in a rally at City Hall, was supported by trade unions across Northern Ireland including the Public Service Alliance and the Irish Congress of Trade Unions.

Unions say they want to highlight the plight of thousands of public sector workers who now face losing their jobs.

A third of all workers in Northern Ireland are employed in the public sector but it is thought that between 20,000 and 30,000 of these posts will be axed.

Peter Bunting, Assistant General Secretary at ICTU Northern Ireland, urged the decision makers to reconsider their options.

ICTU stewards estimated that 15,000 people took part in the march and rally.

The union said the protest sent 'a resounding message to the UK Coalition government' to stop the cuts.