Thousands gather in Madrid to defend Spanish constitution

MADRID, Oct. 10 — Thousands of people gathered in Madrid on
Saturday to defend the Spanish constitution and the unity of Spain almost a
week after an illegal independence referendum was held in Spain’s
northeastern region of Catalonia.

The demonstration was organized by around 50 organizations and people
gathered in the Plaza de Colon in Madrid holding flags of Spain and
shouting slogans such as “I am Spanish” or “no dialogue with those taking
part in a coup d’etat”. The self-determination referendum held six days
ago had been declared illegal by Spain’s Constitutional Court, as it
breached Spanish constitution. Meanwhile, Saturday also saw thousands of
people gathered in city council squares around Spain to ask the Spanish
government and the regional government of Catalonia (Generalitat) to talk
about the Catalan issue. People were dressed in white with no flags, as
requested by the organizers, a citizens’ movement called “Shall we talk?”
that was born in social media to encourage dialogue between the central
government and the regional one.

According to Barcelona’s local police, Guardia Urbana, around 5,500 people
gathered in city council square, Sant Jaume, while in Madrid, around 100
people gathered in Plaza Cibeles, the city council square. Meanwhile,
Catalan leader, Carles Puigdemont, announced he would appear in the
regional parliament on Tuesday to explain the situation after Monday
meeting was banned by the Spanish Constitutional Court. Several people and
groups have offered themselves to mediate, but so far no definitive
decision has been taken on the issue. – XINHUA