AROUND 1.5 million people have taken to the streets of Barcelona for the annual Catalan independence march, according to police.
Demonstrators decked out in red and yellow and waving independence flags brought the city to a standstill and even caused the mobile phone network to crash.
While the march is an annual event, protestors used the occasion to voice their anger at Spain’s tax laws, with Cataluna calling for a review of its tax agreement with the Spanish government.
Cataluna is Spain’s wealthiest region and represents a fifth of the Spanish economy, but the financial crisis has increased demands for financial independence and political autonomy.
Last month, the region requested a €5 billion bailout from the Spanish government to cover what it claims is money owed in overpaid taxes.
Former Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola was among those supporting the march, sending a message of support saying ‘here you have another vote for independence’.