18:53 GMT24 January 2021
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    MADRID (Sputnik) - The Catalan police Mossos d'Esquadra have removed the encampment which the supporters of Catalonia's independence from Spain had established at the Placa de Sant Jaume, where the Catalan government's headquarters, Generalitat, is located, a spokesman for Mossos d'Esquadra told Sputnik.

    "We have not expelled people, however, we have removed the equipment that could hinder work aimed at security provision," the spokesman said, emphasizing that the move was related to security concerns, as the national terror threat level in Spain was set at four out of five.

    The encampment was established on September 11, when Catalonia's National Day was celebrated. Activists claimed that they would not leave the Placa de Sant Jaume until Catalonia became independent.

    Tents were dismantled on September 21 due to La Merce celebrations, honoring Barcelona's patron saint, but only to be reassembled on Tuesday.

    READ MORE: Thousands Rally in Catalonia Calling for Release of Pro-Independence Politicians

    Thousands of protesters have repeatedly gathered on streets of the Spanish city of Barcelona, the capital of the Catalonia region, urging the authorities to release officials jailed in the referendum case.

    Madrid called the 2017 Catalan Independence Referendum illegal and subsequently imposed direct rule over the autonomous region and dismissed its government. Several ministers of the former Catalan government, including Puigdemont, were arrested and fled the country to avoid treason charges.


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    camp, police, protest, 2017 Catalan independence referendum, Catalonia, Spain
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