“In a crisis like this the last thing Barcelona needs is violence”

Image of unity between the Government and the Barcelona City Council after the second weekend of riots in Catalonia. The Minister of the Interior, Miquel Sàmper, and the mayor of the Catalan capital, Ada Colau, appeared on Monday to condemn the acts of vandalism and call the participants in the demonstrations to calm down. “In a crisis like this, the last thing the citizens of Barcelona need is this violence,” said Colau, who has limited himself to making a brief appearance before the press without answering questions. Both the mayor and the person in charge of the Mossos have underlined the good coordination that the regional and local police had had, for which, as they have highlighted, the attack this Saturday against a Urban Guard van could be quickly controlled.

The fire of the police vehicle has centered a good part of the press conference. The Minister recalled that there have been demonstrations for two weeks, followed by violent incidents of different magnitudes, among which the attack on the Vic police station that occurred on Wednesday two weeks ago, a fire produced at a traffic light in Barcelona last week and, finally, the fire of the police van in which there was an agent who left undamaged. Sàmper has spoken of “unprecedented” violence against the police, while the Deputy Mayor for Security, Albert Batlle, has spoken of “attack” to refer to the attack on the police vehicle.

“The City Council reaffirms its full respect for the demonstration but all the rejection and condemnation of acts of violence,” said Colau. “Violence is never justified, especially when it puts people’s lives at risk,” he continued. Its head of security has also confirmed that the City Council is already working in collaboration with the Prosecutor’s Office to carry out the necessary actions to defend the Urban Guard agents, thus leaving the door open to file charges against the detainees, who were 14 people in total just this weekend.

The joint appearance took place after a meeting attended by the Government, the vice-president Pere Aragonès, the spokesperson for the Minister, Meritxell Budó, as well as the Minister for the Interior, while the mayor and the deputy mayor of security, as well as the mayor of the local body. As Sàmper explained, the objective of the meeting was to know first-hand the vision of the municipal officials of one of the cities most affected by the riots.

One of the conclusions of the meeting was precisely that the collaboration between the Mossos d’Esquadra and the Guardia Urbana is sufficient to control the situation and that, therefore, the collaboration of other police officers, such as the Corps, should not be requested. National Police. “It is not a question that we have raised today,” Sàmper has cleared. “In fact I understand and hope that the peak of the violence of these demonstrations has passed,” he added. Batlle also stressed that the situation is under control and wanted to underline that, despite the spectacular nature of the images, the strong police presence and coordination between the bodies last Saturday on the Rambla managed to maintain control during the attack on the police station. of the Urban Guard and that the fire in the van did not cause physical damage.

The Mossos d’Esquadra are now focused on identifying and arresting those responsible for the damage. One of the issues highlighted by the minister is that they have detected the presence of people from other European countries in the demonstrations. Thus, according to his data, of the 14 arrested this weekend, 5 are Italian and one French, and all of them have been framed in the anarchist movement, along with a seventh Catalan supposedly belonging to the same group. However, Sàmper has ensured that “many different and very heterogeneous groups” participate in the incidents, among which the people he has pointed out would be “only one of the groups.” This same Monday, the Catalan police, ordered by a court in the capital, launched a search operation on two ships occupied in Mataró and Canet de Mar, where supposedly people related to the riots of recent days live.

Regarding the investigation into the woman who lost an eye in one of the demonstrations in Barcelona, ​​the minister had highlighted this Monday that “everything indicates” that the mutilation was produced by the impact of a ‘foam’ bullet, the ammunition used by the Mossos, for which he has ensured that they have implemented the protocol to financially compensate the victim. However, the head of the Catalan police has assured that the investigation into this matter is in the hands of the court, to whom all inquiries are sent, for which he has ensured that there will be a judicial inquiry in parallel to the compensation mechanism to which he can avail the victim.

Sàmper has also had words for some of the information that is appearing on account of the negotiations between the independence parties for the formation of a new Government. After the CUP has assured that they had ERC’s commitment to study a moratorium on foam and other changes in the police model, the consller has assured that he does not know the agreements that the negotiating teams are reaching, but has made it clear that in his opinion any change should be studied in the Parliament. “There are many public order models, but there must be one, the one chosen. But it is not an issue that should be debated in 15 days and with a tweet, but rather in the Parliament and with the study it requires,” said Sàmper .

Source: ElDiario.es – ElDiario.es by www.eldiario.es.

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