Pots and pans bang throughout Catalonia against King as he asks for unity

Monarch on coronavirus crisis: "All Spaniards should feel safe"

King Felipe VI of Spain delivering a speech on March 18, 2020
King Felipe VI of Spain delivering a speech on March 18, 2020 / ACN

ACN | Barcelona

March 19, 2020 10:24 AM

King Felipe VI of Spain gave a televised speech Wednesday evening in which he asked for unity in the face of the coronavirus crisis, stating that "all Spaniards should feel safe" as all public institutions are putting in their greatest efforts to combat the public health pandemic.

"We have experienced serious situations before, but we will also get through this one because Spain is a great country," he said, adding that "everyone must contribute to the collective effort" as he thanked people, associations, and those providing public services during the crisis.

As the monarch spoke, however, a 'cassolada' - a pots and pans protest - broke out throughout Catalonia, with many making as much noise as possible from their balconies during the ongoing state of alarm.  

The royal family has long been unpopular in Catalonia but has come under heightened scrutiny after British newspaper 'The Telegraph' revealed the king's father, Juan Carlos, was the beneficiary of an offshore account in which a €100 million gift from Saudi Arabia was deposited while he ruled Spain.