Thousands of protesters have taken to the streets of Spanish cities, demanding the release of Communist and anti-fascist rapper Pablo Hasél. Yesterday (16 February 2021), Hasél was arrested after having locked himself with another activist inside the University of Lleida.
There have been multiple demos in cities around Spain, with Barcelona being the largest.
Hasél’s detention and the subsequent protests are one of many clashes that have occurred in recent days and have appeared in one moment of tension across Spain.
Last weekend, fascists held a commemoration demo in Madrid for the anniversary of the Krasny Bor battle, where the Division Azul (Spanish volunteer division in the WWII supporting the Nazis) participated.
The fascist demo was authorised by the government. During the demo, a speech was made, ‘warning’ that “Marxism and Jews” are still a ‘problem’ for Spanish society, as are the COVID rules because “fascism is joy“.
Moreover, in Linares (Jaén, Spain) last week, two off-service policemen beat up a man and his 14 years old daughter in a bar. After having tried to stop the policemen from initially harassing his daughter, the father was beaten up for doing so.
As a result of the police-instigated abuse, villagers from the site of the incident protested against the police force’s misconduct. However, in response, police “mistakenly” used firearms on the protesters. A 16-year-old boy has been hospitalised as a result of being shot in the leg.
The protests against Hasél’s imprisonment have led to more than 15 detentions. 33 protesters have been injured by the police. People around the world are demanding the release of Pablo Hasél.
The Communist Youth Union of Spain, sister organisation of the YCL, have previously denounced the case, noting, “This is one more example of the hundreds of cases of police montages and farce trials. The objective of the State is to silence combative youth, prevent their organization and strengthen their institutions in the face of any questioning. It is no coincidence that one of the messages for which Pablo Hasel has been condemned was for stating that “The Bourbons are thieves.” What is clearly expressing an objective fact, entails a danger for the Regime; it cannot allow the youth to question the Monarchy as a fundamental pillar of the current system.”
Judith Cazorla, is a member of the YCL’s London District