Conflicts & War

Dozens arrested as protests against Covid restrictions spread around Spain

Madrid, Nov 1 (efe-epa).- Around 60 people have been detained during riots and violent clashes with police following protests on Saturday night against restrictions imposed to curb the spread of coronavirus in several Spanish cities, including the capital Madrid.

The protests began on Friday, when a new set of restrictions to prevent travel and social gatherings to mark All Saints’ Day were imposed, affecting 87 percent of Spain’s population.

The demonstrations continued on Saturday, spreading around the country.

“The violent and irrational behavior of small groups is intolerable,” prime minister Pedro Sánchez said on his Twitter account.

Several regions, including Catalonia, Andalusia and the Basque Country, set new records for single-day infection rates on Saturday.

The protests against the measures, convened mostly on social media, all devolved into violent clashes with security forces, with rubbish containers and other items being set alight and objects thrown at police who were deployed.

The unrest has led so far to about 60 arrests and injured 11 officers, police sources said on Sunday.

“Only through responsibility, unity and sacrifice will we be able to defeat the pandemic that is devastating every country,” Sánchez said, while thanking the work of the security forces.

The most violent protest was in Madrid, where a hundred people gathered. The demonstration ended with a group of 10 people setting up barricades and burning garbage containers to cut off the street.

The confrontations with the police left 12 people injured, including three officers, and 32 arrests in the Spanish capital.

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