Catalan Independence Referendum 2017. Following a long history of separatist ideas, the Catalan regional government 2017 decided to hold a referendum for all inhabitants of Catalonia to vote on their independence. The Spanish Central Government, lead by Rajoy, declared this as anticonstitutional. In a clandestine operation the inhabitants of Catalonia managed to order hundreds of urnes to France, smuggle them accross the border, print ballots and set up polling stations. Regional groups squatted schools. On the day of the referendum Catalan police opposed their orders and the Spanish Policia Nacional and Guardia Civil attempted to confiscate urnes and ballots. During sit ins in fornt of schools and scuffles some 1000 people were wounded according to Catalan authorities. Approximately 43% of the Catalans participated. 93% voted „Si“. After the declaration of the independence by president Puidgdemont, new elections were held. Puidgedemont fled to Bruxelles. From early only far-right, pro-Spanish demonstrators took it to the streets as well. Neo fascist with tattooed swastikas could be seen standing on Catalan flags, showing the „Hitler“-salute. The referendum divided the people living and working in the area and was controversially discussed.
Now - two years later - some nine prominent supporters of the referendum were jailed for up to 13 years for having organized the referendum. Clashes errupt in Barcelona. A new general strike was held. The movement for independence seems to be resparked by the judging.
Pictures from my archive, taken in Barcelona during the referendum 2017.