BARCELONA, Spain (AP) – Spanish authorities were preparing for a fifth night of protests Saturday against the imprisonment of a rapper for insulting the monarchy and praising terrorist violence in his music.
Organizers called for demonstrations in Madrid and Barcelona, where protests in recent days included clashes with the police, damage to property and looting.
There are around 80 detainees, four of them on Friday night, and a hundred injured since the arrest of rapper Pablo Hasél on Tuesday in the northern city of Lleida to serve a nine-month prison sentence.
The disorders are apparently caused by a marginal group of young people who make up a small proportion of the thousands of participants in the marches in support of Hasél and against the laws under which they have condemned him.
The Catalan police, in the area around Barcelona, have reported three attacks on police barracks. Protesters stormed bank offices in central Barcelona, burned garbage containers and looted a sporting goods store on Friday night.
The mayor of Barcelona, Ada Colau, urged to remain calm.
« Defending freedom of expression in no way justifies the destruction of property, scaring our fellow citizens and damaging businesses already affected by the crisis » caused by the pandemic, Colau said.