Police moved in to evict protesters from central Madrid on Monday morning, on the eve of the first anniversary of the grassroots ‘Indignados’ movement.
Activists angry at policitians’ handling of Spain’s economic woes have staged a series of rallies in the run-up to May 15. Despite being cleared from Puerta del Sol plaza, they keep coming back, convinced that last year’s month-long encampment and fresh protests are worth it.
“We either react to stop the impoverishment of our society or we end up with an impoverished society – a second-class Europe with very gloomy prospects for young people,” said one protester, Pedro.
“After taking to the streets and seeing that we are not alone, we must start living differently,” added another demonstrator, Patricia. “Many people are doing it already, creating cooperatives and living in a way they did not think possible before.”
Demonstrators demanded the release of 18 of their number, arrested in the latest protests. At least nine are now free.
Since last May, Spain’s ‘indignant’ protesters have seen unemployment soar to 24 percent and the economy relapse into recession.