“Let nobody ever again dare to doubt the people of Catalonia”. The proclamation yesterday afternoon from the president of the pro-independence group Òmnium, Jordi Cuixart, resonated over the Arc del Triomf in Barcelona to confirm what the people had once again achieved. They had once again responded to the call from pro-sovereignty organisations. The people once more were on centre stage for the fifth consecutive Diada of mass marches around Catalonia calling for a republic, this time in the form of a decentralised display, spread across Catalonia. The number of people who turned out for the demonstrations around the country was again massive, despite all the voices that proclaimed over the last few days that the event would be a failure and yesterday insisted on trying to reduce its importance, as they have done every year since 2012.
The figures again varied massively according to the source. The organisers of the event claimed that in total there were over a million people on the streets, which by far exceeded their expectations. The local authorities put the figure at a little less, some 800,000. Representatives of the central state government lowered the figure to around 370,000, although this number is lower than that of those who finally registered with the ANC, the Catalan National Assembly, before the day itself. Whatever the facts may be, and the numbers may be, the day clearly showed once more the will to form a Catalan republic is strong and persistant. There seems to be no stopping the process towards independence, now that the end is in sight and closer than ever before.