Thousands rally in Madrid against Spanish PM's proposed talks on Catalonia

Thousands of people demonstrated in Madrid on Sunday against Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez's proposed talks to ease political tensions in Catalonia.

The protest was organised by the centre-right Ciudadanos and far-right Vox opposition parties.

Demonstrators waving Spanish flags filled the Plaza de Colon in the city centre in the largest protest Sanchez has faced, with slogans reading "For a united Spain, elections now!".

The Socialist government's proposal last Tuesday to appoint a rapporteur in talks among political parties to address the Catalan independence crisis has galvanised the opposition, which has deemed it a betrayal and a surrender to pressure from Catalan separatists.

Opposition parties have called for early elections.