The Catalan independence vote has divided much of the rest of Spain. In the capital Madrid hundreds turned out in two rallies supporting opposite sides of the argument.
In central Madrid the message was that “Catalonia is the home of all Spaniards”.
It is not only for the Catalans to decide this issue, but its for the rest of Spain too” said one woman
Meanwhile in Madrid’s Puerta del Sol protesters were united is defending Catalonia’s right to a democratic vote on their own future.
“Yes, their place in Spain could have been sorted out long ago when the issue was raised. It’s unrealistic to go on ignoring their demands. people must be listed to other frustrations grow,” said one demonstrator. Others joined in protests to condemn the police violence in Catalonia as officers raided polling stations and used batons and rubber bullets to deter would-be voters.
For Pablo Casodo of the ruling Popular Party the chief problem is that tensions are running high of what is essentially an illegal vote:
“The first thing to do is to re-establish the law. I don’t know if this is a sexy or cool response but for me it is fundamental because without the law there is nothing to discuss.”
Report Carlos Marlasca Morales summed up a day of rallies in Spain’s capital:
“There have been demonstrations for and against the right of the Catalans to decide their relationship with Spain this weekend in Madrid, red and yellow flags in some neighborhoods, banners against the government of Mariano Rajoy in others The truth is that the situation in Catalonia is deeply felt in the capital. But no one knows how to resolve the problem.