Published On: Tue, Oct 3rd, 2017

Hundreds of thousands protest police violence in Barcelona

Shouting “occupation forces out” and “the streets will always be ours,” hundreds of thousands turned out in Barcelona on Tuesday to protest police violence during a banned weekend independence referendum in Catalonia.

Columns of people converged onto the city center as the region went on general strike. A police helicopter flying overhead drew angry whistles as Catalans reel from the unrest that marred parts of the Spain’s northeast region on Sunday.

“On October 1, we were an occupied country, and they haven’t left yet,” Antonia Maria Maura, a 56-year-old primary school teacher, said of national police and Guardia Civil forces that were deployed to Catalonia from other parts of Spain to stop the vote.

City police said 300,000 people were marching in the streets of Barcelona in a peaceful atmosphere, though there were tense moments as protesters said they feared agitators would try and sow discord.

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