Rabat - Friday afternoon at the Las Ramblas area, a Spanish right-wing group marching hours after the Barcelona terror attacks was stormed by a huge crowd of anti-fascist protesters. As violent clashes began to break out, armed riot police were called in to separate the groups.
Rabat – Friday afternoon at the Las Ramblas area, a Spanish right-wing group marching hours after the Barcelona terror attacks was stormed by a huge crowd of anti-fascist protesters. As violent clashes began to break out, armed riot police were called in to separate the groups.
One day after a van ploughed into a crowd on the popular strip, claiming 13 lives and injuring over 100, a few dozen demonstrators gathered outside the La Boqueria public market just off Las Ramblas, according to Spanish news daily El Periodico.
The radical organization Falange, an extreme nationalist political group founded in Spain in 1933, calling for a Christian Spain devoid of Muslim influence were reportedly drowned out by the much larger group of anti-fascist demonstrators calling for peace and denouncing racism.
Falange took to the streets to “protest Islam” and blame Spain’s immigration policy for the attack. La Falange has blamed the “policies of multiculturalism” and immigration for Thursday’s terror attack on their social media accounts: “No one was fooled into thinking that the policies of multiculturalism and #RefugeesWelcome wouldn’t end like they did in Las Ramblas in Barcelona.”
The far-right group were heard chanting slogans such as “Terrorists are not welcome” and “Stop the Islamization of Europe.” Meanwhile, the left-wing Catalan groups Arran and Endavant organized an event near La Boquería to oppose fascism, meeting the hateful slogans with counter-chants of “Nazis out” and “Barcelona anti-fascista,” El Mundo Deportivo reported.
Endavant, a socialist group seeking Catalan independence, explained on their Twitter account that they gathered to voice their opposition to the “terror of Daesh and the fascist hatred.”
Pictures show demonstrators shouting in each other’s faces and fighting in the streets as tensions boiled over.
One photograph shows an anti-fascist punching a Falange supporter in the face amid a scuffle in the crowd. The punched man, who was wearing a T-Shirt emblazoned with the far-right slogan, “Do not stop until you conquer,” was later seen with a black eye.
The heat against Muslims and Moroccans in Spain seems to only be boiling up. In Taragone, the Moroccan consulate plaque was sprayed with red paint, while racist graffiti were inscribed on the walls of the city’s mosque: “You are going to die, you f****g Moroccans.” A picture shared on Twitter shows the building of the Moroccan consulate stained with blood, a clear threat against Moroccans in Spain.
The two incidents came after the two attacks in Barcelona on Thursday night and Cambrils in the early hours of Friday.
In Cambrils, five suspected terrorists were gunned down by police officers during a patrol operation, while four other suspects, of Moroccan origins, are still on the run.
The two attacks have renewed fears of reprisals against the Muslim community in Spain and elsewhere in Europe.