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Wednesday, 27 January 2021

French police disperse Catalan protesters blocking major Spain-France road link

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French police disperse Catalan protesters blocking major Spain-France road link
French police disperse Catalan protesters blocking major Spain-France road link

Police on the French side of the border at La Jonquera were seen pushing hundreds of protesters to the Spanish side and removing fences and barricades from their demonstration that had blocked the AP-7 highway in both directions.

French riot police dispersed hundreds of Catalan pro-independence demonstrators on Tuesday (November 12) who had been blocking a major road link between Spain and France for nearly 24 hours.

Some police officers were seen kicking protesters on the ground and spraying tear gas during the operation.

Trucks and other traffic were diverted to another smaller road as protesters installed concrete barriers on the highway on Monday (November 11) and set up stage to hold concerts.

Catalonia has been rocked by mass protests since long prison sentences were handed down in mid-October to nine separatist leaders who spearheaded a failed independence bid in 2017.

Secretive campaign group Democratic Tsunami, which has organized mass protests including at Barcelona airport last month, claimed responsibility for Monday's disruption.

Asked what Catalan police should do with the protesters sent back over the border from France, Catalan government leader Quim Torra said there was no reason for charges to be brought.

"We ask for this operation to be conducted with exquisite care, so that no one gets hurt," he told Catalunya Radio.

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