65,000 defend Spain's unity in Barcelona
Protesters refuse dialogue with the Catalan executive on independence, some demanding prison sentences for "rebellion and sedition" against indy leaders
65,000 people took to the streets on Thursday in Barcelona to defend Spain's unity and protest against independence. As part of the events for Spain's National Day (12-O), several civil society organizations organized a demonstration that ended at the central Plaça de Catalunya square, near La Rambla.
Many took part in the demonstration waving Spanish flags, while some also waved Catalan ones. The motto of the rally was 'Yes to Spain, Yes to Catalonia'. Amongst the participants, one could also see many posters against plans for independence, accusing the Catalan president of leading a 'coup.' There were also chants in favor of Spain's Guardia Civil police, and messages asking for Rajoy to "resign" and Puigdemont to be put "in prison."
Spokespeople from the organizations refused dialogue between the Catalan and Spanish government on independence. Some, such as Javier Megino, vice president of the 'Espanya i Catalans' group, demanded prison sentences for "rebellion and sedition" against pro-independence leaders.
Miriam Tey, vice president of another organizing group, Societat Civil Catalana, said that events in the last few days have left Catalonia "without self-government." Tey said she is "disappointed, anxious and worried" about the future of Catalonia, and urged president Carles Puigdemont to be "responsible." "Only from unity, and never by behaving unilaterally, will we solve our problems," she said.