Ada Colau: 'Cutting roads doesn't help'
Barcelona mayor, a former anti-eviction activist, says recent protests "don't help people in prison"
Barcelona's mayor Ada Colau said on Tuesday that cutting roads and similar pro-independence protests won't bring solutions to the Catalan conflict.
A former anti-eviction activist, Colau urged protesters to reflect on how useful their actions really are. As pro-independence protesters cut a major highway in the south of Catalonia for 15 hours on Saturday, Barcelona's mayor asked "what's the point" of this kind of mobilization.
"Cutting roads doesn't help with anything: it doesn't help Catalonia's image, nor Catalonia's interests, and I don't think it helps those in prison," she said in a radio interview.
Protesters cut the highway to protest what they see as "Spain's repression" against pro-independence leaders. Nine of them are in pre-trial jail, and four are on a hunger strike.
Colau said pro-independence groups, such as the CDR (those that cut roads during the weekend), have a right to protest, but she wondered what their actions bring to Catalonia and how they help those incarcerated.
"What is this? Are we saying the worse things get, the better? This idea has proven totally false, because we have always got worse," she said on radio SER-Catalunya.
Colau also asked president Quim Torra to "rectify" after he said that Catalonia should follow the "Slovenian road" to independence. Barcelona's mayor urged the Catalan and Spanish governments to engage in dialogue and not to put that "at risk".
Tensions between Madrid and Barcelona are heating up again after the Spanish government accused the Catalan executive of not doing enough to stop protests such as cutting the roads. Conservative parties in Spain, such as the PP and Cs, have already urged the Socialist president Pedro Sánchez to again suspend Catalonia's self-government and rule the country from Madrid.