Madrid protests: Thousands rally against Catalan pardons

Sun Online Desk

14th June, 2021 02:19:20 PM printer

Madrid protests: Thousands rally against Catalan pardons

Tens of thousands of people have joined protests in the Spanish capital Madrid against controversial plans to pardon jailed Catalan separatists.

Leaders of Spain's right-wing parties joined the demonstration against the pardoning of 12 separatists behind a failed independence attempt in 2017.

Protesters accuse the Socialist-led Spanish government of using the plan to shore up its political support.

But the government says the pardons will help calm tensions over Catalonia.

The semi-autonomous region's drive for independence plunged Spain into its biggest political crisis in 40 years in 2017.

Nine Catalan separatist leaders were found guilty of sedition in 2019, linked to their role in an illegal independence referendum. Another three were found guilty of disobedience but not jailed.