Activists replace removed yellow ribbons in Girona area

Unionist Ciutadans takes such signs to ombudsman while Catalan vice president calls on the party to stop "confrontation strategy"

Some activists hanging yellow ribbons in La Bisbal d'Empordà on August 29, 2018 (by Gemma Tubert)
Some activists hanging yellow ribbons in La Bisbal d'Empordà on August 29, 2018 (by Gemma Tubert) / ACN

ACN | Barcelona

August 30, 2018 02:47 PM

Less than 24 hours after around 80 masked activists removed yellow ribbons from public spaces in some Northeastern Catalan towns, these signs of solidarity with the pro-independence jailed and exiled leaders are back in place.

More than a hundred people gathered in La Bisbal d'Empordà on Wednesday evening to hang yellow plastic in the form of ribbons on façades, street lights and other urban furniture, using ladders. 

One of the activists said that they had planned to hang ribbons in another town, but after the previous night's "damage" decided to replace those that had been removed from public spaces.

Police takes official note

During the action, the Catalan police took official note of the developments as they had not been notified that the protest was going to take place.

The police force did the same the day before with the unionist activists who took down signs dressed from head to toe in white protective clothing and with their faces masked. They were equipped with cutters and ladders.

This, as the yellow ribbon controversy continues. The unionist Ciutadans party is promoting their removal from public spaces, with its leaders themselves undoing some of them from handrails on Wednesday.

Later on Wednesday, a demonstration against these signs supported by Ciutadans and the People's Party ended up with a journalist attacked by some protesters.

Ciutadans: rights "violated"

On Thursday Ciutadans took the case to the Spanish ombudsman. They claim that citizens' rights have been "violated" because of the "partisan" occupation of public spaces and public buildings. But not only that: they complain about the "defencelessness" of citizens after, according to them, the Catalan government illegally used their personal data for the October 1 referendum and has been disobeying judge rulings.

Catalan VP: no to confrontation

After Ciutadans' latest push against the yellow signs, the Catalan vice president Pere Aragonès called on the unionist party to stop "the confrontation strategy."

"For a handful of votes they think they can get it is not worth risking the social peace," he claimed.

For him, Albert Rivera's force is comfortable when there is "tension in the street."