Thousands of women rally outside Australian parliament

The March 4 Justice rallies were spurred by a recent wave of allegations of sexual assault, discrimination and misconduct in some of Australia's highest political offices. Women wore black to signal "strength and mourning," carried banners with slogans including "Shatter the silence. Stop the violence" and joined "We will not be silenced" chants.

Recently reported scandals include rape allegations against Attorney-General Christian Porter, who has strongly denied the alleged 1988 assault, saying it simply did not happen. Domestic media had said Defence Minister Linda Reynolds, who is under pressure over her handling of the rape accusation, had called her former staffer Brittany Higgins a "lying cow."

"There are significant failings in the power structures within our institutions. We are here because it's unfathomable, but we are still having to fight the same, stale, tired fight," Higgins told thousands rallying outside of Australia's parliament.

The allegations involving people in Morrison's government and political party are expected to dominate parliamentary proceedings over the next two weeks.