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You are here: Home News Spanish News Spain marks national day with small parade, Catalan demo
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12/10/2012Spain marks national day with small parade, Catalan demo

Spain Friday celebrated its national day with a military parade marked by austerity while in Barcelona Catalans opposed to greater independence for their region rallied to show unity.

The budget for the parade in Madrid, the first since conservative Mariano Rajoy took office as prime minister, had been slashed by two thirds, compared with 2011, from 2.8 million euros to 900,000, as the nation grapples with its acute financial crisis.

No tanks were on show or fighter aircraft. Only the national Aquila aerobatic team took to the skies, streaking the red and yellow colours of the national flag.

The parade lasted only an hour and involved 2,600 troops. They were reviewed on foot by King Juan Carlos, in spite of a hip injury sustained during a widely criticised elephant hunt in Africa.

The royal family was warmly applauded by the crowd in spite of a series of scandals, including the hunting trip and another involving the royal couple's son-in-law, Inaki Urdangarin who, like his wife, the Infanta Christina, was absent.

Rajoy was met with silence. His predecessor, the socialist Jose Luis Rodriguez, was booed on the same occasion last year.

Catalonia, where there is a groundswell of demand for greater autonomy or even independence, sent no representative to the celebrations in Madrid.

But in the regional capital Barcelona demonstrators called for national unity. Police put their numbers at 6,000.

Last month hundreds of thousands took part in a demonstration in Barcelona calling for independence for Catalonia, the most heavily-indebted of Spain's 17 regions.



© 2012 AFP


5 reactions to this article

Xavi posted: 2012-10-12 22:23:53

We Catalans are indebted because the fiscal deficit from 1986 is 200 bilion Euros, and Social Security 25 bilion more. That means 8% of GIP, every year.

Xavi posted: 2012-10-12 22:25:26

See why Catalonia is looking for freedom:
http://www.youtube.com/embed/JJQkmRnLjeE

David posted: 2012-10-13 00:45:27

Catalunya is in debt because it hasn't been well managed, the same that has happened in other autonomous regions. The amount of taxes paid to the central government is high and I hope Rajoy and Mas will at some point get back to the table to negociate this. Catalunya should be the economic motor that helps Spain out of the crisis so at some point I hope all side sees sense and stop the provocations and insults that are happening at the moment.

However, an independent Catalunya has to appeal to more people if it's going to get the majority vote. Nationalism is by nature descriminatory and excludes anyone who doesn't share their view. While a hard core of nationalists exists the sharp rise in support for independance is maily due to the economic situation and the unfair tax treaty with Mardid.

I for one will be packing my bags in by some miracle Catalunya gets independance......many others will too as to live in a Nationalist state can be quite stifling.


Esventxu posted: 2012-10-16 12:20:04

I would like to clarify some facts regarding the 12-O 'demo':

- The number of 6,000 protesters is an estimation on behalf of LOCAL police sources under nationalist/separatist control, i.e. it is scrupulously underestimated in order to minmize the event and downplay its importance.

- Rather than a 'demo', the gathering has been an unpolitical National Day party, including varied music performances, where catalans could celebrate their Spanishness in a positive, inclusive, peaceful and unbiased way, with a clear message of support for the unity of Spain and its people.

- This unionist event is the result of a spontaneous idea by catalan individuals, put into effect through social networking within ONLY 20 DAYS from conceiving through planning and organizing everything.
- It has not received any support or subsidies from the regional government.
- Regional press and media (influenced by our separatist government) have either ignored or badmouthed and belittled the event.
- Financially, the organization depended solely on its organizators' own pockets and some speedily donations from other entities.
- Politicians embracing this unpolitical event have merely endorsed it emotionally and on a personal basis.

- It is totally INCONGRUOUS TO COMPARE the two demonstrations and make CONCLUSIONS of any kind because:
By contrast, the SEPARATIST demo is a famous and experienced event organized by the regional government; celebrated yearly; planned with 5 months time of preparation and a vast budget; subsidized by the regional separatist government and several separatist parties; advertised intensely and published regularly in advance in all regional media on behalf of the government; participants from the entire region are transferred to Barcelona by coach and catered for with food/drinks, all this at the expense of the regional government etc etc....

Robert posted: 2012-10-17 13:08:06

Let's not forget that, at least in the social networks, it appears that a lot of the "unionist" event drew people from other regions of Spain. I don't now if it's true, but the falange was said to have been among the "positive, peaceful and unbiased" people there.

I know a ton of people who went to the "separatist" demo, and none of them got any money, had their train fare paid, got free drinks or any of the other things claimed above.

- a foreigner who would welcome an independent Catalonia

5 reactions to this article

Xavi posted: 2012-10-12 22:23:53

We Catalans are indebted because the fiscal deficit from 1986 is 200 bilion Euros, and Social Security 25 bilion more. That means 8% of GIP, every year.

Xavi posted: 2012-10-12 22:25:26

See why Catalonia is looking for freedom:
http://www.youtube.com/embed/JJQkmRnLjeE

David posted: 2012-10-13 00:45:27

Catalunya is in debt because it hasn't been well managed, the same that has happened in other autonomous regions. The amount of taxes paid to the central government is high and I hope Rajoy and Mas will at some point get back to the table to negociate this. Catalunya should be the economic motor that helps Spain out of the crisis so at some point I hope all side sees sense and stop the provocations and insults that are happening at the moment.

However, an independent Catalunya has to appeal to more people if it's going to get the majority vote. Nationalism is by nature descriminatory and excludes anyone who doesn't share their view. While a hard core of nationalists exists the sharp rise in support for independance is maily due to the economic situation and the unfair tax treaty with Mardid.

I for one will be packing my bags in by some miracle Catalunya gets independance......many others will too as to live in a Nationalist state can be quite stifling.


Esventxu posted: 2012-10-16 12:20:04

I would like to clarify some facts regarding the 12-O 'demo':

- The number of 6,000 protesters is an estimation on behalf of LOCAL police sources under nationalist/separatist control, i.e. it is scrupulously underestimated in order to minmize the event and downplay its importance.

- Rather than a 'demo', the gathering has been an unpolitical National Day party, including varied music performances, where catalans could celebrate their Spanishness in a positive, inclusive, peaceful and unbiased way, with a clear message of support for the unity of Spain and its people.

- This unionist event is the result of a spontaneous idea by catalan individuals, put into effect through social networking within ONLY 20 DAYS from conceiving through planning and organizing everything.
- It has not received any support or subsidies from the regional government.
- Regional press and media (influenced by our separatist government) have either ignored or badmouthed and belittled the event.
- Financially, the organization depended solely on its organizators' own pockets and some speedily donations from other entities.
- Politicians embracing this unpolitical event have merely endorsed it emotionally and on a personal basis.

- It is totally INCONGRUOUS TO COMPARE the two demonstrations and make CONCLUSIONS of any kind because:
By contrast, the SEPARATIST demo is a famous and experienced event organized by the regional government; celebrated yearly; planned with 5 months time of preparation and a vast budget; subsidized by the regional separatist government and several separatist parties; advertised intensely and published regularly in advance in all regional media on behalf of the government; participants from the entire region are transferred to Barcelona by coach and catered for with food/drinks, all this at the expense of the regional government etc etc....

Robert posted: 2012-10-17 13:08:06

Let's not forget that, at least in the social networks, it appears that a lot of the "unionist" event drew people from other regions of Spain. I don't now if it's true, but the falange was said to have been among the "positive, peaceful and unbiased" people there.

I know a ton of people who went to the "separatist" demo, and none of them got any money, had their train fare paid, got free drinks or any of the other things claimed above.

- a foreigner who would welcome an independent Catalonia

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