Catalonia independence supporters protest in Brussels for EU support

World Today

People wave Catalan ‘Estelada’ flags during a pro-independence demonstration on December 7, 2017 in Brussels during a pro-independence demonstration on December 7, 2017 in Brussels. A sea of around 45,000 pro-Catalonia protesters demonstrated in Brussels on December 7 to show support for the region’s deposed president and urge the EU to support its drive for independence from Spain. / AFP PHOTO / Emmanuel DUNAND

Ousted Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont said he’ll stay in Belgium for now, as he faces arrest in Spain for engineering Catalonia’s independence referendum. His announcement came as thousands of Catalans descended on Brussels.

They demand the EU take sides, while the EU said it doesn’t want to get involved. 

CGTN’s Mariam Zaidi reports.

Follow Mariam Zaidi on Twitter @zaidi_mariam

Nothing symbolises democracy more than a protest. Tens of thousands of Catalonians who traveled from Barcelona and other parts of the region, to the heart of the EU capital. They joined their now deposed President Puigdemont in Brussels.

Just a stone’s throw away from the EU’s institutions, Catalonians gathered to make Europe hear their voice. They want the EU to intervene against what many here are calling the oppression of the Spanish state that has criminally prosecuted their elected leaders, and ignored their right to self determination.

Most importantly,  the protesters want the world to see how desperately they seek the right to independence ahead of Catalonia’s regional elections on Dec 21. 

The EU may still feel it has no authority to intervene in this growing national crisis, but as the protesters march outside their buildings, they will definitely be watching closely.