Spain: 28 Arrested in Police Raids on Social Centers

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Police in Spain carried out raids on social centers in Madrid, Barcelona, Palencia and Granada early Monday morning. Just days after Spanish Congress approved three repressive laws which human rights defenders say are revenge against social movements that emerged after 15M.

Reports so far indicate 28 people have been arrested in #OperacionPiñata. According to police, 14 of the detainees are part of the so-called Grupos Anarquistas Coordinados (GAC – Coordinated Anarchist Groups). They are accused of belonging to a terrorist organization.

(See below for updated arrest totals)

According to the Spanish Ministry of the Interior’s press release, 14 people arrested today are accused of “belonging to a criminal organization with terrorist aims and committing criminal offenses of sabotage and placing explosives and incendiary devices.”

Publico.es reported that 14 more people were arrested for resisting arrest bringing the total of detainees to 28 in today’s 6am police raids. Publico also reported that the operation remains open and further arrests over Monday may occur.

“Here is video broadcast by Ministry of Interior of #AtaqueALosCSOAS”

The Centro Sociales Autogestionados La Quimera located on Lavapiés, and 13-14, Vallecas released a statement condemning the repressive actions that took place in various locations in Spain. The statement said that the social center located in Nelson Mandela plaza was “besieged” by police at 6:30am and “after smashing the door” agents had taken “materials belonging to the social center and groups that give it life.”

“The police refused to show any order or give any explanation as to what was happening,” continues the statement of the CSA, which considers the operation an attempt to “criminalize and retaliate against” the anarchist movement.

“They destroyed the door of 13-14 of vallekas. Now they let us enter, record everything and broken doors.”

“They failed to open the sliding door. They didn’t know it opens to the side and decided to shoot it down.”

“Registered papers, computers missing, locks destroyed…”

Diagonal is calling today’s raids “Operation Pandora Part 2.” 16 people were arrested in raids on the Kasa de la Muntanya in December 2014, they were also accused of being part of a so-called “anarchist terror organization.” Those arrested in December were released on 3,000 each bail in January 2015.

Protests have been called under hashtags #AtaqueALosCSOAS and #YoTambienSoyAnarquista and people have already started to gather to protest in solidarity with those arrested in today’s raids.

#YoTambienSoyAnarquista (I am also an anarchist) trending #1 in Spain:

“The protest on Aragó, shouting Freedom, liberty, anarchists to fight! #JoTambéSócAnarquista #OperaciónPiñata”

We will keep you posted and update here and on twitter @NewsRevo with further information on today’s police raids and ongoing protests in Spain.

UPDATE March 31, 2015:
Per Diagonal the final total on those arrested during Operación Piñata is 38. The 14 who were arrested for resistance and disobedience are already released. 11 others charged with “theft” are expected to be released today. The 13 remaining who stand accused of belonging to a terrorist group are still in custody and could go before a court tomorrow.

Sources:
Publico.es
Diagonal
CSROA LA Quimera de Lavapiés

About Author

Erin Gallagher is a multimedia artist, translator and writer for Revolution News.