In the midst of the preparations for their next national day on September 11, 2013 Catalan communities all over the world have celebrated with human chains to claim independence from Spain.
On September 11, celebrations will include the Via Catalana (Catalan Way), a human chain along Catalonia's (Spain's northeast region) coastline, which is meant to be the longest human chain ever made in the European Union. The chain is organized by the civic association Catalan National Assembly (CNA), in an attempt to show the increasing popular support for the option of independence and to push the regional government to start the negotiation process with the Spanish government.
More than 400,000 people who have published comments, pictures and videos on the Catalan Way can be tracked through this website and through the hashtags #11s2013 and #viacatalana.
On September 11, 2012, thousands of hundreds of Catalans took to the streets of Barcelona in the largest pro-independence rally in the region's history, also organized by the CNA. As a result, the center-right governing coalition Convergència i Unió (CiU) decided to hold the regional elections ahead of schedule, on November 25, 2012. Voter turnout peaked at almost 70%, the highest in 30 years, and the four political parties committed to holding a referendum on self-determination (CiU-ERC-ICV-CUP) got more than twice as many seats as those defending the status quo (PSC-PP-C). Crucially, both of Catalonia’s major parties – the governing center-right CiU and socialist PSC – suffered severe setbacks.
In order to show their support and encourage participation, Catalan communities all over the world have organized human chains in different cities. Below are some of the most striking pictures and videos.
Hold Your Hands. #ViaWDC #ViaCatalanaMon #inforac1 pic.twitter.com/eYUQtSMXLS
— Gustau Alegret (@GustauAlegret) September 4, 2013
#ViaCatalanaSydney pic.twitter.com/3wmzQR6oMn #viaCatalanaMón #CatalanWay via @CatalanNation
— Laksmí ||★|| #DUI (@Laksmiz) September 4, 2013
Amb més de 50 persones, la cadena a Praga ha estat un èxit! #viacatalanamon pic.twitter.com/TtLqVbKZcb
— Carles Noguera (@carles_noguera) September 2, 2013
With more than 50 people, the chain of Prague has been a success!
Oh, là là! C'est trop jolie! 300 held their hands at the very heart of France #viacatalanamon http://t.co/jBEjQ9Oc52 pic.twitter.com/hmjvLNHvTO
— Catalan Assembly (@catalanassembly) September 4, 2013
Catalans sing anthem and demand independence from Spain in New York: http://t.co/RW5ZuLGtW8 via @YouTube
— Adrià Alsina (@AdriaAlsina) September 1, 2013
Video (no emès) de la cadena humana ahir a la Gran Muralla Xinesa http://t.co/74OSQM3wE9 #ViaCatalana
— Sergi Vicente (@sergivicente) September 1, 2013
Video (not broadcast) human chain yesterday at the Great Wall of China
Fa efecte. Desenes d'independentistes a la Gran Muralla de la Xina #viacatalanamón via @eduardvoltas.pic.twitter.com/k5AskpNtWp“
— lluc salellas vilar (@llucsalellas) August 31, 2013
Eduard: “Catalans around the world have gone mad.” Iluc: “Indeed. Dozens of independents at the Great Wall of China.”
Cadena a Buenos Aires! #viacatalanamon Més de 250 persones a Plaza Congreso! Gran #ViaCatalana pic.twitter.com/X1pWXTf2HD
Chain in Buenos Aires! # viacatalanamon More than 250 people in Congress Plaza! Great
— Berta (@bertags) August 25, 2013
Estic plena d'orgull!! #ViaCatalana a #BANGKOK!! (http://t.co/WmTZzLnJgB) #viacatalanamon
— Cristina Figueras (@cristinuti) September 1, 2013
I am full of pride!!
Nova York -@ggarolera- #ViaCatalana pic.twitter.com/8ke8HKeNNk
— Oriol Rosés i Belló (@oriolroses) September 1, 2013
Cadena per la independència a #Helsinki #ViaCatalana #viacatalanamon pic.twitter.com/ki0spmvmek
— Pau Rodríguez i Ruiz (@Pauroru) August 31, 2013
#ViaLondres #ViaCatalana #ViaCatalanaMon pic.twitter.com/zqyfHqAjSK
— Kieron Merrett (@kieronam) August 31, 2013