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Week of unrest throughout Catalonia leaves 579 injured

4 people have been blinded in one eye and 14 have been hospitalized as a result of turmoil following sentencing of pro-independence leaders

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20 October 2019 12:56 PM

by

ACN|Barcelona

According to Catalan health minister Alba Vergés, 4 people have been blinded in one eye and emergency services have treated 579 people throughout Catalonia who were injured in the unrest that broke out after the Supreme Court announced it was sentencing 9 independence leaders to up to 13 years in prison for sedition.

All in all, 14 people have been hospitalized due to the injuries they have sustained at the tense nightly protests - one is a police officer who remains in a critical condition at Barcelona's Hospital de Sant Pau, while another is a young woman is at Barcelona's Vall d'Hebron Hospital with a traumatic brain injury.

As for the 4 people who have been blinded in one eye this week, Vergés has affirmed that it is "medically impossible to prove" that these were the result of rubber or foam bullets fired by police officers, but did say that "it is clear what has been happening these days" and lamented their use as the Catalan parliament had already prohibited them.

"I don't think we should be using them again, we want 21st-century police," the minister commented.

Vergés also criticized the Spanish interior minister, Fernando Grande-Marlaska, for "only being concerned about some of those who have been injured, the police officers."

According to her, Saturday night was much more peaceful than previous nights as there were only 14 people injured, rather than the 100 or so who have been hurt every other night prior since the unrest began.

Lastly, the minister defended the right to protest, and defended that people should be able to do so "safely."

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  • An ambulance and firefighters treat an injured protester on Barcelona's Passeig de Gràcia on October 17, 2019 (by Pau Cortina)

  • An ambulance and firefighters treat an injured protester on Barcelona's Passeig de Gràcia on October 17, 2019 (by Pau Cortina)

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