A MAN has apparently suffered facial injuries and has lost an eye during violent protests at Barcelona airport on Monday.
According to hospital reports, the man was admitted with wounds typically causes by rubber or foam bullets, used by the police force against the crowd.
Thousand of protesters caused chaos at Barcelona’s El Prat airport on Monday by blocking access routes in an organised protest against the jailing of seven separatist leaders for their part in the unilateral secession attempt of 2017.
Officers from the Spanish National Police and the Catalan Mossos d’Esquadra charged at protesters, with the Mossos using foam bullets designed to be shot directly at the target. The National Police however were using rubber bullets, previously banned in Catalonia but still widely used in Spain.
Emergency services had to attend to a total of 131 people, 24 of whom needed hospital treatment from injuries sustained during the police charges.
Lawyers from the human rights firm Iridia say that some of the 131 injured were journalists covering the event, and that the majority of the injuries were caused by rubber or foam bullets.
The minister of the premiership of Catalonia, Meritxell Budó, justified the “isolated” police charges as “justified”. “Sometimes these actions have to be carried out to refrain from other actions that could be worse.” He explained.
The Catalan regional interior department however will investigate the actions of Mossos d’Esquadra as part is its standard protocol into these incidents to determine eventual responsibilities.