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2 Oct, 2017 17:09

Catalonia to hold general strike in protest at police violence

Catalonia to hold general strike in protest at police violence

More than 40 unions and Catalonian associations are calling for a general strike across the embattled region following widespread violence during the national police crackdown on the independence referendum Sunday.

More than 840 people were injured in clashes with police after the Guardia Civil tried to close polling stations across Catalonia, violently removing people who were attempting to vote.

In response, the Catalonian government has approved a 'go-slow' of public transport services, which will operate at 25 percent capacity during the morning and evening rush hours. Inter-regional transport services will reportedly operate at 33 percent capacity.

The workers groups called for a 'nationwide' work stoppage across Catalonia on Tuesday October 3 in protest at the abuse of power by the Spanish National Police, the Guardia Civil, reports La Vanguardia.  

Aena, the management company responsible for Catalonia's airports, announced a 24-hour period of minimal service and advised those travelling to and from Catalonia on Tuesday to contact their airline and make all necessary preparations ahead of expected delays, according to a press release.

READ MORE: Catalonia to launch commission on ‘violation of fundamental rights’ over referendum violence

The two most powerful national unions have called on workers to show solidarity in the face of "disproportionate" violence employed by the police and Guardia Civil but have not called for a Spanish general strike as the situation does not relate to a labor conflict but a political one.

The Spanish government announced Monday that it would consider proposals to settle the crisis put forward by other political forces, provided they are aimed at the “common good and the defense of our democratic system.”

Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy had already held consultations with other parties, including the Socialists and the centrist Ciudadanos, it said in a statement.

It further stated that Rajoy voiced support for the security forces, commending their handling of the referendum issue and also expressed gratitude to the EU leaders that backed Madrid in its dispute with Catalonia.