A year after Los Indignados first took to the streets across Spain, the group returned over the weekend to protest as Spain sits in a second recession while unemployment approaches 25%.
Thousands of people gathered across Spain united against Mariano Rajoy’s austerity measures which include cuts in social services, education and health, while the government pumps seemingly endless cash into the banks.
Everyone was there from pensioners and the unemployed to teachers protesting at education cuts. Protests began on Saturday and resumed on Sunday afternoon, and some were expected to continue until this morning.
On one of the hottest days of the year so far protesters gathered under banners reading “No to cuts” and “People, not Banks” as demonstrations filled the squares.
A repeating chant of “They don’t represent us” was aimed at the country’s politicians as drums were beaten and handkerchiefs waved with a carnival atmosphere.
However, it wasn’t all peaceful and protest organisers say up to 20 people were injured during what they say was excessive violence used by the police to clear another demonstration earlier on Sunday.
Javier Bauluz, a photographers from Associated Press, said he was pushed and struck in the face by a police officer “for doing my job”.
“The general attitude was to get us out of the square and prevent us from working, shoving us if necessary,” said another photographer, Gabriel Pecot.
Turnout at the protests seemed to be lower than last year. Police estimate around 100,000 people protested across Spain.