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  1. ITV Report

Man travelled from Bangor to vote in controversial Catalonia referendum

Ruben Chapela travelled from his home in Bangor to vote in favour of independence Credit: ITV Wales

Ruben Chapela calls Bangor home but travelled to Spain, where he was born, to vote on Sunday's controversial referendum.

ITV Wales’ current affairs programme Y Byd ar Bedwar travelled with him and captured the violent clashes between voters and police.

Barcelona remains at a standstill as pro-independence supporters stage a general strike in protest over violence during the referendum.

Schools, Metro Stations and roads are closed with most of the disruption taking place in and around The Catalonian capital.

Mr Chapela told the programme he voted in favour of independence:

The Spanish Government has acted in an authoritarian way against the Catalan Government. They have blocked Catalonian finances; they have sent their Police force into Catalonia to try and stop the democratic process.

We are fighting for rights many people take for granted.

– Ruben Chapela

Around two million people voted in Sunday‘s referendum with 90% of the electorate in favour of independence from Spain.

Violence broke out during the controversial referendum Credit: ITV Wales

The Spanish Government declared the referendum illegal and sent thousands of police into the region to stop the vote from going ahead.

Y Byd ar Bedwar was there as police officers forcibly removed ballot boxes from a polling station.

Violent clashes between Spanish Police and pro independence supporters sent shock waves around the world as they began to appear on social media.

This is repression they cannot and should not carry out attacks on ordinary citizens.

If Spain wants to keep its status as a democratic country within the European Union they have to behave in a different way.

– Ruben Chapela

Over seven million people live in Catalonia but only around two million of them took part in the referendum.

One woman who opposed the referendum told Y Byd ar Bedwar:

I hid myself at home during the vote because I want to stay as part of Spain. We have been overwhelmed by people who are separatists, we don’t feel safe.

– Anonymous
  • For more on the story watch Y Byd ar Bedwar, tonight 9:30, S4C.