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In Spain, 'Indignados' Continue to Make Demands

BY Nick Judd | Thursday, September 29 2011

Reading up on the doings of the "indignados," a group of Spanish protesters known first for a prolonged occupation of the square in Madrid's Puerta del Sol — in the style of the Jan. 25 protesters who occupied Tahrir Square in Egypt — I came across this Inter Press Service report on what the Spanish protesters have been up to since:

The "indignados" began to organise via social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter to hold spontaneous demonstrations against the government's economic and political performance in the midst of the worst economic crisis in decades.

The movement has so far blocked more than 65 evictions, although an average of 175 evictions a day were carried out in Spain in the first quarter of 2011 as a result of the real estate bust, Esther Vivas, a member of the Centre of Studies on Social Movements at the Pompeu Fabra University in the northeast city of Barcelona, told IPS.

Vivas described the flash demos mobilised through the social networking sites to prevent the eviction of elderly people, widows or people with limited mobility as "small concrete victories that demonstrate that fighting is useful and that everything is possible if people organise."

Due to the economic crisis, thousands of people have failed to keep up on their mortgage payments and have been forced out of their homes under a law "that shamefully protects banks and leaves citizens completely defenceless," Cosín said.

Inter Press Service is a news agency supported by various U.N. agencies and programs, the Open Society Institute, and several world governments.

The "indignados," also called 15-M after their May 15 occupation of the square in Madrid, are one of a number of protest groups to spring up around the world with the Internet-enhanced people power of Tahrir's Jan. 25 protesters as inspiration.

This post has been updated to fix a typo.