October 4, 2017

Poor Barcelona

My brother and his children live in a village near Barcelona. And I’m worried about them. Barcelona used to be a friendly city and now is the stage of the most absurd and incomprehensible chaos. For decades, in the rest of Spain, people had would deny that Catalonia could be a serious problem like the Basque Country was it, because of the terrorism. The Catalonians have no terrorists.

But it was there, in Catalonia, where the separatists, in power, went further than the Basques, and called for the vote on independence in a forbidden referendum last Sunday., October 1st. More than 2 millions went to vote and more (over 4 millions) stayed at home to boycott the referendum or because they didn’t want to participate). According to the regional authorities, the 40% of the voters casted their vote and of them, the 90% said yes to the independence.

Those who went to vote found in some points violent clashes with the police who hit with batons to the people concentrated in front of the poll stations to keep them open. In some places there were hard rioting. Many wounded, two stay at the hospital and above all, a lot of anger. Yesterday there was a general strike in Catalonia to protests against the police operation.

The king Felipe VI accused the authorities of the region to divide their own people and break the stability. Today these authorities had said that they will move on Monday to declare independence from Spain, backed according by its own data by the 30% of the total of the voters if we take in account those who boycotted the vote because they considered it illegal. What will be the answer of the government? I really don’t know. Maybe they didn’t expect that the Catalonian government would dare to declare in fact the independence.

I think that all this was not necessary at this moment. This is a big crisis and although the premier and the king are saying that the State of Law will prevail, they are failing to tell us how. We don’t know what are they prepared to do, because it seems that the succession of facts are way faster than their reaction. we don’t know if whatever they decide will be acceptable or not for the Spaniards and for the Catalonians and we don’t know if we will overcome this crisis peacefully, without violence. I don’t want to be pessimistic, but with the people in the streets and thousands of police officers already deployed in the region it will be very difficult.


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About Olga Brajnović

Journalist. In my fifties. I've worked for 26 years in a newspaper in Spain. I worked for two years as a stringer and correspondent in the US, and went as a special envoy to other places like the Balkans. Sea lover. Avid reader. Classic Music enthusiast.


Europe, World and Politics


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