US News: Catalan separatists clash with Barcelona police ahead of general strike - - PressFrom - United Kingdom
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US News Catalan separatists clash with Barcelona police ahead of general strike

09:15  18 october  2019
09:15  18 october  2019 Source:   france24.com

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Catalan separatists burned barricades and clashed with police in Barcelona on Thursday in a fourth night of violence triggered by Spain's jailing of nine of Separatists have called a general strike and a rally on Friday against the Supreme Court's decision to jail the separatist leaders for their role in a

Catalan separatists clashed with the police on Saturday in downtown Barcelona as tensions rose ahead of the anniversary of the Spanish region’s illegal referendum on secession, which ended in violent raids by security forces.

a group of people standing in front of a crowd posing for the camera © Rafael Marchante, Reuters

Catalan separatists burned barricades and clashed with police in Barcelona on Thursday in a fourth night of violence triggered by Spain's jailing of nine of their leaders over a failed independence bid.

Hundreds of young protesters chanting "independence" set fire to improvised roadblocks in the centre of the city late in the evening, tossing Molotov cocktails at police, who responded by firing foam and anti-riot rounds, according to AFP correspondents.

The fresh clashes came on the eve of a huge protest planned in the Catalan capital. Separatists have called a general strike and a rally on Friday against the Supreme Court's decision to jail the separatist leaders for their role in a referendum banned by Madrid and a short-lived declaration of independence.

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BARCELONA , Spain (AP) - Catalan separatists clashed with police on Saturday in downtown Barcelona , with two arrests being made, as Catalan regional police ‘Mossos D’Esquadra’ clash with separatist protesters during a counter-protest against a demonstration in support of Spanish

Riot police engaged in a running battle with angry protesters outside Barcelona 's airport on Monday after Spain's Supreme Court convicted 12 separatist leaders of illegally Police clash with protesters during a demonstration at El Prat airport. 'Bashed up Barrett': UK expert ranks Japan ahead of ABs.

Video: Spanish unity supporters gesture in front of riot police during a demonstration (France 24)

Earlier on Thursday, around 25,000 striking students and their supporters took part in a midday rally outside Barcelona city hall, according to municipal police.

Thousands more are on a cross-country march towards Barcelona for Friday's rally.

"The actions we have been staging over the past few days testify to the helplessness we feel as the Spanish state continues to reject (independence) and threaten us, while Europe remains silent," a 23-year-old accountant, who would only give his first name as David, told AFP.

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BARCELONA , Spain – Police clashed on Saturday with Catalan separatists in downtown Barcelona as tensions increase before the anniversary of Some protestors also threw projectiles and engaged with the police line, which used baton strikes to keep them back. The clashes erupted after local

Catalan separatists burned barricades and clashed with police in Barcelona on Thursday in a fourth night of violence triggered by Spain's jailing of The court's decision has thrust the Catalan dispute to the heart of the political debate ahead of Spain's November 10 general election, its fourth in as many

Eduard Salinero, a 21-year-old physics student who is in favour of secession, said many people who want Catalonia to remain a part of Spain back the protests "because they feel it is totally unfair to send our elected politicians to jail".

Activists blocked several roads across Catalonia by burning tyres while the commuter rail service in Barcelona was intermittently disrupted due to demonstrators on the tracks, officials said.

Several roads and highways were also blocked off due to the mass marches which departed on Wednesday from five Catalan towns heading for Barcelona.

Xenia Cabeza, 18, said she was protesting "because they don't let us vote in a referendum" on secession. She carried a sign that read "You can't imprison an entire people".

Announced Monday morning, the verdict has sparked three days of large demonstrations which have turned increasingly violent with separatist activists engaged in nighttime clashes with riot police in Barcelona and elsewhere.

Violence rocks Barcelona for a fifth day after half a million separatists rally

  Violence rocks Barcelona for a fifth day after half a million separatists rally Violent clashes escalated in Barcelona late Friday, as radical Catalan separatists hurled rocks and fireworks at police, who responded with teargas and rubber bullets, turning the city centre into a chaotic battleground. The deterioration came on the fifth consecutive day of protests in the Catalan capital and elsewhere over a Spanish court's jailing of nine separatist leaders on sedition charges over a failed independence bid two years ago. Around half a million people rallied in Barcelona earlier on Friday, police said, in the biggest gathering since Monday's court ruling as separatists also called a general strike in the major tourist destination.

Catalan separatists held a general strike on 3 October 2017 following Catalonia 's referendum on independence two days earlier. The referendum

Police and protesters clash in city centre, as well as other Catalonia towns.

'No impunity' 

Overnight, protesters in Barcelona set fire to cars and large wheelie bins, overturned metal barriers and threw firecrackers at police, who pushed back with batons and shields.

Emergency services said 58 people were injured, including a 17-year-old who was hit by a police van.

Another 38 people were injured in protests in other Catalan cities, including Lerida and Girona.

Police have arrested 97 people across Catalonia since the protests began, Interior Minister Fernando Grande-Marlaska said Thursday.

"We are experiencing episodes of great violence in Catalonia carried out by minority groups which are perfectly organised," he said, vowing there would be "no impunity" for those involved in the violence.

Berta Barbet, a political scientist at the University of Barcelona, said the demonstrations "in their current size" would likely only last a week.

"We are talking about actions that take a lot of time and energy and I don't see a big part of the population keeping it up for long," she told AFP.

'Push forward' 

While Catalan president Quim Torra has sanctioned and even encouraged civil disobedience, his government is also responsible for the regional police who are charged with controlling demonstrations, putting him in an uncomfortable position.

Barcelona mayor pleads for violence in Catalonia to stop

  Barcelona mayor pleads for violence in Catalonia to stop BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — The mayor of riot-stricken Barcelona pleaded Saturday for calm after violent protests by Catalan separatists rocked Spain's second largest city for a fifth consecutive night. "This cannot continue. Barcelona does not deserve it," Mayor Ada Colau told reporters, adding that Friday's violence was the worst so far. Protesters clashed with police again later on Saturday despite efforts by some citizens to mediate by gathering between the two sides. There was also a skirmish between separatist supporters and police in a square in Spain's capital, Madrid. Authorities are bracing for more protests in the coming days.

Riot police have confronted thousands of protesters outside Barcelona 's airport. The ruling is likely to muddy the waters ahead of a national election on November 10 — Spain's fourth in four years. This comes ahead of the verdict in the trial of leading Catalan separatists . Protesters blocked streets, staged sit-ins and clashed with police , in a second day of unrest in the region of Catalonia .

New clashes erupted between Catalan pro-independence demonstrators and riot police in the centre of Barcelona late on Tuesday over the jailing of nine separatists by the Supreme Court over a 2017 independence bid.

Torra had not commented on the unrest for days, but overnight he called for an immediate halt to the violent clashes, saying there was "no reason or justification for burning cars".

But just hours later, he pledged in Catalonia's regional parliament to push for a new vote on secession by the end of his term in early 2022.

"We must push forward and not allow ourselves to be intimidated by threats and bans," he said.

A poll published in July by a public Catalan institute showed support for an independent Catalonia at its lowest level in two years, with 48.3 percent of people against and 44 percent in favour.

The court's decision has thrust the Catalan dispute to the heart of the political debate ahead of Spain's November 10 general election, its fourth in as many years.

According to the first poll since Monday's verdict, the ruling Socialists are likely to secure the most votes but again fall short of a majority.

The main opposition conservative Popular Party, which takes a hard line on Catalan separatists, looks set to make significant gains, it found.

Published in El Mundo daily, it predicted the Socialists will capture 122 seats in the 350-seat parliament, compared with the 123 it took in the last election in April, while the PP would win 98 seats, up from 66. (AFP)

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