Catalan police round up suspects from June 15 protest

Protestors attempted to stop deputies from entering regional assembly for budget debate

The Catalan police force, the Mossos d'Esquadra, on Monday began arresting 22 people who have been implicated in disturbances that took place outside the regional parliament on June 15. A demonstration that day, which was part of the wave of popular protests known as the May 15 movement, saw a dozen or so regional politicians pushed around, verbally abused and spat at by members of the assembled crowd.

The 22 suspects are, according to police sources, those who physically impeded the deputies from entering the parliament. Around 32 politicians had to be airlifted into the building's grounds by helicopter, among them the regional head, Artur Mas.

The regional force was due to take statements from the suspects, before passing those statements onto the Spanish High Court. The 22 will then be released, according to a statement made by the Mossos.

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The High Court will be considering an offense "against the institutions of the state," according to legal sources.

Members of the protest movement reacted to the news on Monday by calling a protest for 7pm in the Plaza de Catalunya, in Barcelona.

The June 15 incidents came after a protest was called by the 15-M movement outside the parliament, where the region's politicians were due to debate the new budget. The demonstrators were objecting to the proposed cuts to services due to be made by the parliament.

A number of politicians were surrounded and insulted by members of the crowd, while some even had paint thrown at them, in spite of the police cordon that was in place.

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