'Catalonia has no king,' separatist protesters say during Spanish royals' visit

By Joan Faus BARCELONA (Reuters) - Thousands of demonstrators banged on kitchen pots and chanted 'Catalonia has no king!' on Monday to protest a visit by the Spanish royal family to the capital of the region that has been hit by weeks of separatist demonstrations.

Reuters November 05, 2019 03:10:58 IST
'Catalonia has no king,' separatist protesters say during Spanish royals' visit

Catalonia has no king separatist protesters say during Spanish royals visit

By Joan Faus

BARCELONA (Reuters) - Thousands of demonstrators banged on kitchen pots and chanted "Catalonia has no king!" on Monday to protest a visit by the Spanish royal family to the capital of the region that has been hit by weeks of separatist demonstrations.

Attended by King Felipe, his wife Queen Letizia and two daughters, the venue of the Princess of Girona young talent awards ceremony in Barcelona was heavily guarded by police who had installed heavy fences and blocked one of the city's main thoroughfares with vans.

"Nowadays, there can be no space for violence, intolerance or disregard for the rights and freedoms of others", King Felipe said during his speech at the ceremony, referring to Catalonia.

Some protesters burned pictures of the king and threw paint at riot police.

Waving Catalan independence flags, some of the demonstrators yelled abuse at attendees as they tried to reach a police checkpoint, pushing at least one of them, and forcing a few to turn back and try to find another entrance, a Reuters reporter said.

Separatists want to establish a Catalan republic.

Dolors Aguilera, 70, said the king's presence in Barcelona was a provocation.

"We have political prisoners in jail. We cannot accept it," she said.

The mass protests were triggered by the Spanish Supreme Court's sentencing of nine separatist leaders on Oct. 14 to prison terms of between nine and 13 years on charges of sedition for their role in Catalonia's failed independence bid in 2017.

"We have become republican because Madrid treats us like a colony," said Aguilera's husband Antoni Gonzalez, a 68-year old pensioner, who had brought a whistle for the protest.

The rekindled Catalonia crisis has also further complicated Spain's fragmented political environment as preparations are being made for its fourth election in as many years on Sunday after having been without a proper government for months.

Independence is highly divisive in Catalonia, with an opinion poll in July showing 44% backing secession and 48.3% opposed.

(Reporting by Joan Faus; Additional reporting by Elena Rodriguez, Andrei Khalip, Editing by Angus MacSwan and Grant McCool)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

Global Markets: Stocks ascend to record on economic recovery, vaccine outlook
Business

Global Markets: Stocks ascend to record on economic recovery, vaccine outlook

By Chuck Mikolajczak NEW YORK (Reuters) - A gauge of global stocks hit a record and oil prices jumped on Monday as the newest positive data for a potential COVID-19 vaccine and signs of economic recovery in Asia boosted sentiment. U.S. stocks advanced, with the Dow Industrials setting a record as it neared the 30,000 mark for the first time, after pharma company Moderna said its prospective vaccine was 94.5% effective in preventing the illness, which has crushed economies across the globe

Airbnb IPO filing shows third-quarter earnings beating virus with cost cuts, new focus
Business

Airbnb IPO filing shows third-quarter earnings beating virus with cost cuts, new focus

By Anirban Sen and Joshua Franklin (Reuters) - Airbnb Inc's initial public offering (IPO) registration showed on Monday that the home rental startup turned a profit in the third quarter despite the COVID-19 pandemic, as it gears up for one of the most anticipated stock market debuts in recent years. The filing, published ahead of Airbnb's anticipated stock market debut in December, showed a dramatic recovery in its fortunes, after the coronavirus outbreak dragged down its core home rental business during the first half of the year. The slump forced it to lay off 25% of its workforce in May, suspend marketing activities for the year and seek $2 billion (£1.5 billion) emergency funding from investors, including Silver Lake and Sixth Street Partners, at a valuation of $18 billion

Biden says U.S., allies need to set global trade rules to counter China's influence
Business

Biden says U.S., allies need to set global trade rules to counter China's influence

By David Lawder WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President-elect Joe Biden said on Monday the United States needed to negotiate with allies to set global trading rules to counter China's growing influence but declined to say whether he would join a new China-backed Asian trade pact signed on Sunday.