Military religious parade in Catalan town goes ahead despite protests
Four Spanish ministers attend legionnaires' procession with the Christ of the Good Death in southern Spain
The Spanish Legion, a rapid-force unit of the Spanish army, took part on Thursday evening in a religious procession in the Catalan town of Palafolls, amid protests. A group of around 300 people, mainly from pro-independence and anti-fascists organizations, protested against the presence of the legionnaires in the town. Riot police officers from the Catalan Mossos d'Esquadra impeded the protesters accessing the area of the procession.
Then, those in favor and against the march shouted at each other, with some saying 'Fascists out of our neighborhood' and 'A lot of uniforms but not many brains' and others responding with chants in favor of Spain, the Spanish king and the Legion.
The Spanish Legion played a key role in support of the Spanish dictator Francisco Franco during the Spanish Civil War and the subsequent dictatorship. In modern times, legionnaires are part of the Spanish army and, in fact, on Thursday four Spanish ministers attended their procession with the Christ of the Good Death in Málaga, in southern Spain.
Such an important presence of members of the Spanish cabinet in a religious and military event sparked some criticism on social media, as Spain is a secular state. Flags in the Spanish ministry of Defense are flying at half-mast for the "death of Christ".