“When he grows up, he will study this demonstration at school and say he was there.” Marc and Laura did not think twice and with little Biel of only seven months, flew from Barcelona to London and then on the TGV to Brussels so as not miss what they consider to be one of the most historic events of recent times: “We need to internationalise the conflict in Europe because it is important to explain what we are doing here today,” said Marc. “We are a group of four grandparents who have come to fight for our rights, for freedom and democracy,” said Consol, from Torello. “We came especially for our children and grandchildren so they can have a better country.”
The Parc du Cinquantennaire yesterday morning was filled with families with children, couples, groups of friends and a mixture of groups, among them a grandmother of 88, cane in hand, flanked by daughter and granddaughter: “I have lived through a war and I think we are back at that time, so today I wanted to come to restore democratic and human rights, because what is happening, with the Catalan government in prison is unacceptable,” she said.
Despite the temperature which stayed at three degrees, the march was festive and joined by supporters for other countries such as Scotland and Belgium. One Scot, George Kerevan, a member of the Scottish National Party, believes that Europe is broken: “Countries like Scotland and Catalonia are bringing about a change because of a profound crisis of values; everyone has realised now that Spain is not democratic, and Europe must listen to the Catalans and return to the spirit of the 90s.”