Europe

Spain: Police arrest 4 in Catalonia amid general strike

46 injured in clashes between security forces, protestors, including 16 police officers

Ahmet Salih Alacaci   | 22.02.2019
Spain: Police arrest 4 in Catalonia amid general strike

By Senhan Bolelli

MADRID

Police in Spain arrested four people Thursday in connection with a general strike called by pro-independence Catalan non-governmental organizations, trade unions and political parties.

In protest of the trial of 12 Catalan leaders in the country’s capital, Madrid, strikes brought several major Catalonian cities to a halt, including Barcelona, Girona and Tarragona.

At least 46 people were injured in demonstrations after clashes broke out with security forces, including 16 police officers and a Spanish journalist caught among the Catalan protestors.

A large demonstration was held in Barcelona calling for "independence" and "freedom for political prisoners".

Spain dissolved the Catalan parliament after the Catalan government held an illegal independence referendum in October 2017.

Shortly afterward, then Spanish Premier Mariano Rajoy implemented Article 155 of Spain’s constitution which allows Madrid to intervene in the internal affairs of the country’s autonomous regions.

Ousted Catalan President Carles Puigdemont then fled Spain to Belgium before being briefly held in Germany for 12 days under an European Union arrest warrant

He returned to Brussels after his release, where he has been living in exile ever since.

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