Thousands march in Barcelona for jailed Catalan leaders


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Heaps of of thousands of protesters in Barcelona appreciate taken part in a titanic demonstration in opposition to the imprisonment of Catalan leaders.

In maintaining with native media reports, 900 buses arrived in the city on Sunday morning carrying the protesters from for the duration of Catalonia and cities in southern France.

The demonstrators were protesting the jailing of 9 Catalan separatist leaders who’re also going by trial on charges of « riot ».

Whereas the police acknowledged around 315,000 folks grew to become up for the protests, organisers place the figure at more than 700,000, primarily based on native media.

Catalan organisations Omnium Cultural and the Catalan National Assembly (ANC) called these protests to tag six months since the arrest of two grassroots legit-independence activists.

The activists, Jordi Cuixart and Jordi Sanchez, were imprisoned for their just in the independence referendum in October closing year.

Chanting « Freedom for the political prisoners », the demonstrators marched along Parallel Avenue, a important thoroughfare, many waving the red-and-yellow Catalan flag.

« This day’s demonstration is a march in opposition to repression, and we deserve to new as soon as again that we need to no longer a violent movement, » Lidia Cerda, a trainer who modified into part of the protests, told Al Jazeera.

« We quiz of that more than just a few folks from Spanish and Catalan societies will join our cause on story of we need to no longer finest struggling with for independence, but additionally for democracy.

« We hope that the authorities in Madrid will originate paying attention to us. »

European Union leaders appreciate kept away from encouraging other separatist movements for the duration of the bloc and appreciate declined a mediation just in the Catalan region.

Final November, European Council President Donald Tusk acknowledged, « All of us appreciate our beget emotions, opinions, assessments, but formally talking there’s no longer a map for an EU intervention. »

Then again, every other protester, Xavier Cid Pineiro, argued, « Europe can bellow our political rights as European residents. »

« In due direction, the EU must act as a mediator between Madrid and Barcelona. The demonstrations of this day are in opposition to repression, to query freedom for our political prisoners and to denounce the passivity of the EU, » acknowledged Pineiro.

« I finest hope that the EU will gaze this movement and that we are in a position to new our cohesion with political prisoners and their families. »

Spain’s authorities suspended Catalonia’s autonomy and imposed enlighten rule after the region’s chief threatened to scurry ahead with a proper declaration of independence if Madrid refused to defend talks.

Final Thursday, Spain’s Supreme Court refused to liberate Sanchez, stopping him being named as chief of the region on Friday.

If a brand novel chief is no longer named earlier than the rupture of May maybe well well maybe just, Catalonia will be forced to call every other election.

Broken-down Catalan President Carles Puigdemont modified into arrested by German police on March 25 after an world arrest warrant in opposition to him modified into issued by Spain’s Supreme Court.

Puigdemont modified into charged with misuse of public funds in the case of the independence declaration, moreover to « riot », a price that carries a maximum penitentiary sentence of 30 years.

Then again, he modified into released on bail whereas looking out ahead to a courtroom decision on whether or to no longer extradite him to Spain. He had hoped to in the end return to are residing in Belgium.

Of us defend a banner depicting portraits of exiled Catalan politicians during a legit-independence demonstration in Barcelona on April 15 [Josep Lago/AFP]

SOURCE: Al Jazeera and news agencies

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