2011-05-27 Police forces crack down brutally on camp in Barcelona: protesters return in thousands and take back the square #spanishrevolution #acampadabcn #bcnsinmiedo

WLCentral will be providing news coverage from Spain on the ongoing #spanishrevolution through this liveblog. Contact us at @wikileaks_world or wikileaksworld@wikileaksworld.org to help us with footage, information and opinion.15MayRevolution.com provides information in English about the 15M movement. An updated agenda of related protests around the world can be found here.

May, 27th 2011

After surrounding the camp in early morning, the local police forces in Barcelona evicted the people staying in Plaza Catalunya at around 11:00 AM with the excuse of cleaning up. The reason, they say, is that because Football Club Barcelona plays the Champions League Final (an important football match) the area might be flooded by a massive celebration if they win. They stated that if this happens, then the tents and objects placed there could be used during the celebration for violent purposes, which they say is a “security risk”, making it necessary to evict so as to let cleaning brigades in the square. They also said they want to make clear it is not an eviction and that the protesters will be allowed to return after the operation is ended. While the police violence was taking place on the outskirts of the square, 300 people were surrounded in the center and sitting down peacefully they called for non-violence and asked the police to explain themselves. Official government channels have stated that 15 people suffered minor injuries during the operation, although this number could be much larger, as much as 45 or 65 according to El Pais and other independent media. Ironically, the spokesperson for the Catalan police said, on national television that the operation had been non-violent. On Twitter the #acampadabcn and #bcnsinmiedo hashtags have been very active and many videos as the ones below have been posted to show the un-called-for brutality with which the police evicted the peaceful protesters. In response to these actions, social media sites have been buzzing with anger, with many people around the world sending their support and others swearing they will return.

A few minutes ago, at around 14:00 pm thousands of protesters broke the police line around the square and have reclaimed what is left of their camp. Most of it, including computers with valuable data and donated furniture, was taken away in trucks that were part of the cleaning operation. The different sections of the 15M movement (@acampadasol, @acampadavalencia etc.) have called for a unified protest around Spain at 19:00h to support people in Plaza Catalunya. The hashtag for the protest is #confloresalas7 (which means with flowers at 7).

This is what the square looked like after it was taken again:


May,22nd 2011


Election day has ended in Spain after last night the protest that started at 8:00 pm, planned as the most important yet, managed to occupy most of the squares and streets around Sol. Many of them went with there families and many others came in from neighbouring towns and cities. The result of the elections, however, is a very pronounced swing to the right. Partido Popular (PP) has claimed victory in most of Spain’s autonomous communities and provinces, with 37.54% of votes, over the 27.80% obtained by PSOE (leading center-left party and currently in Government). Esperanza Aguirre, winning PP candidate in Madrid for the third time in a row, made her majority even bigger, and shortly after claimed that the Government should call for anticipated elections so that they would not “prolongue the agony of the country”. These results were expected by most analyists, who concurred that on top of the effects of the economic recession, the 15M movement had divided the mass of left wing voters.

The thousands of people in Sol, however, remain intentionally oblivious to the results, because, in their own words “they don’t represent us”. his means that their intentions lie not only ahead, in the future, but also outside the current electoral system. Because the movement, so heterogenous, is finding solutions from inside itself, nobody has been told what to do with there vote. In fact, without any central organization, people printed out small leaflets explaining the possible ways to vote. In them was an unbiased dissection of the aspects of abstention or voting for a minor party. The movement continues to refuse participating because they feel they would lose their idendity in the process, so over the day acts of silence have been carried out to demonstrate, according to one spokesperson, “the unity of the movement in times of adversity”. Therefore, they plan to continue, providing the space for the birth of a true participatory democracy until a point where politicians will be forced to listen. It is important to take this into account because the movement is highly uncentralized. Even though the camp in Sol is the biggest and most organized, there are hundreds of them around the world, made up of Spanish and non-Spanish citizens, and in them the same process of debate is going on. These will be merging very slowly on the web over the following months, as new sites and more volunteers are showing up.

This plan (already approved- see interview in http://wlcentral.org/node/1794) took another step forward during today’s General Assembly: a consensus was reached and the camp will go on for another week with the explicit objective of exporting the model growing there to the neighborhoods of Madrid and to the local councils of smaller towns in the area. They also recorded a set of official political proposals, that they insisted should be broadcasted worldwide in an effort to communicate the results of the process. There has been no official reaction to these assertions from the authorities and the possible retaliation by the police is yet to be known.

Example of an assembly held at Puerta Sol: