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Published: Sun, September 24, 2017
Global Media | By Abel Hampton

Spanish police arrest suspect over Barcelona attacks

Spanish police arrest suspect over Barcelona attacks

Williams also warned that the Spanish government will "not win the loyalty of people by sending in police, locking people up and banning demonstrations".

The students are carrying pro-independence flags and banners supporting the October 1 vote.

News reports says Spanish police have arrested 12 people in raids on offices of the regional government of Catalonia as a crackdown intensifies on the region's preparations for a secession vote that Spain says is illegal.

Student union representatives are calling for protesters to remain over the weekend to show support for the vote.

Spain is on the brink of a political crisis as Catalan leaders insist on holding an independence vote on October 1 whereas the government in Madrid sees the move unconstitutional and wants to use any means its possesses to prevent the vote.

Spain's Interior Ministry says the man arrested on Wednesday is suspected of helping the terrorists obtain the materials needed to make the explosives and had an especially close relationship with the radical imam.

"We denounce the attempt by the state to intervene in the police forces of Catalonia", Joaquim Forn, the head of Catalonia's interior department and the civilian head of the Catalan police, said Saturday, reading a statement on regional television.

A demonstrator holds up a banner reading "We vote to be free" as she tries with others to stop the vehicle carrying Xavier Puig, a senior official of the Catalan government, after he was arrested by Guardia Civil officers in Barcelona, Sept. 20.

The region's police forces - the Spanish civil guard, national police, and Catalan police (Mossos d'Esquadra) - are to be directed by Diego Perez de Cobos, a Spanish civil guard colonel, as announced by Catalonia's top public prosecutor. A pro-independence group says that about 2,500 supporters were attending the protest in Hospitalet. The Constitutional Court has ordered it suspended while it studies its legality.

Numerous demonstrators in Barcelona had slept overnight near the judiciary building in tents or hammocks strung up between lampposts.

Earlier in the week, the Catalan government accused Madrid of essentially taking over the regional administration after federal police raided its offices and arrested officials.

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