Saturday, January 28, 2012

Guardia Civil Assaults Man for Speaking Catalan



Last Thursday, 26th of January, around noon, a Catalan lawyer was beaten by a pair of guardia civiles at the Barcelona airport for speaking Catalan to one of them. The Guardia Civil force, with ties to the Spanish army, acts as a kind of interregional anti-crime, traffic, and customs police force. It has an infamous history in Catalonia and Spain.

As the unidentified lawyer was getting ready to go through airport security on his routine Barcelona-Madrid flight, a person working for the airport security company Prosegur asked him to remove his belt, at which point the lawyer began to protest, because the machine “hadn't beeped.” A guardia civil standing right next to the scene approached the lawyer and asked “Do you have a problem with the Prosegur guard?” The lawyer began to explain that everything was OK, when the guardia civil cut him short: “I can't understand. Speak to me in Spanish.”

The Guardia Civil Force at the Barcelona Airport
The lawyer refused to speak in Spanish “because of the way he'd asked me,” and continued speaking to the guardia civil in Catalan. At that point, the guardia civil, said “you're going to miss your flight.” Then he, with another guardia civil accompanying him, brought the lawyer into a small, windowless room, where the first guardia civil beat the lawyer, while the second one just watched. This in spite of the fact that by then the lawyer had already switched to Spanish, trying to appease the guardia civil.

Inside of the room, the first guardia civil hit the lawyer with a hard object on his leg. Then he beat him repeatedly on the head with his open hand (so as not to leave any marks). All the while, the guardia civil kept saying things like "motherfucking Pole" (polaco de mierda, a typical insult used by Spaniards against Catalans). Again, the second guardia civil did nothing.

After they let him go, the lawyer called the local Catalan police station at the airport to report the incident and file a formal complaint.  He intends to go further and sue the two guardia civils for their assault. The doctor's report on his injuries mentions  “brusing and swelling on the side of the thigh, hurting to the touch, plus pain to the touch on the left side of the neck.”

We at Help Catalonia wish to denounce this occurrence, and the fact that things like this still happen in modern-age Spain, as they have been happening for the last 300 years since Catalonia was invaded by Spain.

For more info, read the articles at Diari Ara and Vilaweb

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3 comentaris:

  • Great Travel www.culturetrails.co.uk says:
    January 30, 2012 at 5:57 AM

    The answer is simple (even though it is complicated):

    Leave.

    You are not Spanish

    You are not in Spain

    Europe will welcome you

  • Ítaca says:
    January 30, 2012 at 8:53 AM

    In this day and age this is totally unacceptable. It is time Catalunya broke free.

  • Rockcs says:
    February 10, 2012 at 10:27 AM

    I think is better to translate "Polaco de Mierda" to "Motherfucker Polish".

    Pole in a translation for catalan: Polo, Pal, màstil, pertiga...

    Polish maintains its fascist origin that comes from national socialist contempt against the Polish, here in Spain the fascist government dubbed the spanish people with this pejorative "nickname".

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