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'If one of them didn't end up with a broken rib, they were close'

New footage shows Spanish police violence on referendum day

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28 September 2018 01:58 PM

by

ACN | Barcelona

New footage showing Spanish police violence seen on October 1, 2017, from the officers' cameras was published by the Catalan News Agency on Friday morning.

Some officers can be seen beating and yelling at voters, and then commenting on the operation to each other afterwards.

"I used my truncheon like there was no tomorrow. And there was no way. And they pushed and pushed. If one of them didn't end up with a broken rib, they were close," one of the officers remarks.

An excerpt shows some officers inside a police station surrounding a woman and yelling at her. They ask "where are the ballot boxes?" "I swear to God that I don't know," she answers, crying.

Protesters chant: "We only want to vote!" 

Seizing the ballot papers and boxes to prevent the vote was the main mission of the police officers, who appear in the footage desperately searching the polling places for voting material, while people can be heard chanting "We only want to vote!"

The footage in one Barcelona school used as a polling place shows officers breaking down doors and ransacking an office full of cupboards and filing cabinets. One officer breaks open a ceiling looking for hidden material.

There was also plenty of activity outside polling places, and video footage outside one Girona school shows a voter standing up to an officer with a camera asking if he is also recording the "kicks to the balls" and "the punches."

"We couldn't deal with them," say officers

Another clip shows some 40 Guardia Civil police officers arriving in a small town of 370 inhabitants where a tractor was parked to block their way. The Spanish police talk to the Catalan police officers already there, who warn them that inside "there are small children and old people."

One of the Guardia Civil officers tries to gain entrance, explaining to the people inside: "We simply want to do our job. We want to take what it is inside and leave." However, the voters respond with cries of "they will not pass," and the order is given to "take off our berets and put on our helmets and gloves." The officers then begin to force their way into the building.

Later in the recording, when the Guardia Civil officers are leaving, now with the images lost but not the sound, an officer can be heard saying, "Fucking hell, what a mess. We couldn't deal with them, what strength they showed." Another officer agrees. "How the motherfuckers were pushing," he says.

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  • A still from the video showing La Guàrdia Civil police on operations on October 1 2017 (ACN)

  • A still from the video showing La Guàrdia Civil police on operations on October 1 2017 (ACN)