Protesters calling for Catalonian independence plan to gather in Barcelona on Friday, October 9, to coincide with the visit of King Felipe VI who is attending a trade fair there. Demonstrators plan to form a human chain between Franca Railway Station and the Columbus Monument from 10:00 (local time).
Localized disruptions and a heightened security presence should also be expected around the protest.
Spain was thrown into a constitutional and political crisis after Catalonia held an independence referendum, deemed illegal by the Spanish government and marred by violence, on October 1, 2017. Despite a series of logistical and judicial obstacles enacted by the central government to prevent the vote, 42 percent of the Catalan population participated in the referendum, 90 percent of whom voted in favor of independence. Madrid officially suspended the region's autonomy on October 27 - just moments after the Catalan parliament unilaterally declared independence - and implemented direct central rule.
Those in Barcelona are advised to avoid protests as a precaution, monitor the situation, allow additional travel time, and heed any instructions issued by local authorities.
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