Thousands of protesters staged demonstrations in several Spanish cities on Saturday, February 2, demanding higher public pension payouts to keep up with inflation and denouncing a royal decree approved by the government in December 2018 which stipulated a revaluation of pensions. The largest protests were held in Madrid and Barcelona; taxi drivers, on strike for a 13th day to demand stricter regulation of ride-sharing services, joined a pensioner march in the capital. Demonstrations demanding pension reform were also notably held in Seville, Mallorca, and Valladolid.
Larger demonstrations are slated to be held in Spanish cities on Wednesday, February 13. A heightened security presence and localized transportation disruptions are to be expected near protest sites.
The Spanish government last raised the pension payout scheme by less than 1 percent in 2017. Pensioners have protested across Spain for months, demanding comprehensive pension reform to make the payout system sustainable for retirees. The December 2018 royal decree specified that pension payouts would rise, in general, by 1.6 percent.
Individuals in Spain are advised to monitor developments to the situation, avoid all protests and demonstrations as a precaution, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities.
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