Catalan Referendum Violence ‘Injures Hundreds’

According to Catalan police, at least 337 people have been injured following clashes after national police attempted to prevent voting in Catalonia’s independence referendum.

Spain’s central government had pledged to stop the poll, which was declared illegal by the country’s constitutional court.

Police officers had been brought in from the rest of Spain, and are preventing people from voting and seizing ballot papers and boxes at polling stations.

In the regional capital Barcelona, police used batons and fired rubber bullets during pro-referendum protests.

The latest injury toll was confirmed by a spokesman for the Catalan regional government, as well as the region’s health department.

Separately, the Spanish interior ministry said 11 police officers had been hurt.

At a press conference, Spain’s Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria said police had “acted with professionalism and in a proportionate way”.

Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont, however, condemned the action of the national police and Guardia Civil, who were sent into Catalonia in large numbers to prevent the vote from taking place.

“The unjustified use of violence… by the Spanish state will not stop the will of the Catalan people,” he told reporters.

Categories: Catalonia, Europe, Spain, The Wire, World

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