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Monday, 26 November 2012

"Fascism alive and well in Spain"

Facism alive and well in Spain: Little girl with ribbon in her hair gives Franco salute as Catalonians vote on whether to quit country
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Far-right supporters of General Franco attended rallies decrying the Catalan bid for independence yesterday as they marked the 37th anniversary of the former Spanish dictator.

Children as young as six joined in as crowds in Madrid performed fascist salutes to honour Franco, who, during his dictatorship, made using the Catalan language illegal during his time in power from 1939 to 1975.

The rally came as separatists in Catalonia won regional elections but failed in their bid for an independence referendum.
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The result was a relief for Spain's ruling government, saving it from a potentially embarrassing breakaway campaign from the country's wealthy north-east region as it struggles with its own economic crisis.

Catalan President Artur Mas, who has implemented unpopular spending cuts, had called an early election to test support for his drive for independence for Catalonia.

Voters frustrated with the economic crisis and the Spanish tax system, which many Catalonians feel is unfair on them, handed almost two-thirds of the 135-seat local parliament to four different separatist parties that all want to hold a referendum on leaving Spain.

But they punished the main separatist group, Mas's Convergence and Union alliance, or CiU, cutting back its seats to 50 from 62.


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Hate: A girl aged around six joins in with family members giving fascist salutes at Plaza de Oriente, Madrid


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Vocal: Franco's supporters, most of whom were elderly or middle-aged, show their support for the dictator


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Joining in: A supporter of General Franco is joined by pensioners, one of whom can barely raise her arm to make the fascist salute before a flag bearing the slogan 'Catalonia is Spanish'


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Catalan homeland: Many in the region have long campaigned for independence as seen here as they demonstrated in Brussels ion 2009

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