Catalan separatists’ divisions erupt on referendum anniversary

A year after a banned referendum on secession from Spain, tens of thousands of Catalan protesters piled pressure on the region’s separatist government Monday during an anniversary marked by road and railway line blockades and late-night clashes with police.

According to municipal police, 180,000 protesters gathered in Barcelona late in the day behind a banner reading “October 1, no forgetting, no forgiving”, to push for independence at a demonstration called by the influential civic association ANC.

“We’re disappointed because people are pushing things as much as they can but they (politicians) aren’t responding,” Francesc Serra, a 43-year-old gardener, told AFP.

At the end of the demonstration, clashes erupted late Monday between separatists and the regional police forces, with protesters — some with their faces covered — throwing stones at officers who responded by charging.

Hundreds of protesters managed to knock down barriers at the entrance of the regional parliament just after 21:00 local time (1900 GMT).

Source: Seychelles News Agency