Catalonia's executive admitted Thursday that plans for an outlawed independence referendum had been dealt a major blow by a police crackdown, but vowed to press ahead, urging support from the global community.
The statement said the extra police will provide backup for the regional Catalan police, known as the Mossos d'Esquadra, who are also under orders to prevent the staging of the referendum.
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Despite the setbacks Catalan's regional leader Carles Puigdemont has vowed to press ahead with the referendum, defying a court ban.
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"We are not accepting that the Spanish Interior Ministry assumes command over the Mossos", Catalan Interior Minister Joaquim Forn tweeted.
Some 2,000 protesters, many waving red and yellow Catalan independence flags, hit the streets of Barcelona on Friday for the third day of demonstrations against the Spanish authorities' crackdown on preparations for a banned Catalonian independence referendum.
The university's administration responded to the rallies saying that the students could be in the building of the educational institution until their protest remained peaceful and the property of the university remained undamaged.
Meanwhile, hundreds more pro-independence supporters protested outside a courthouse in the north-eastern Catalan town of Hospitalet de Llobregat to demand the release of the arrested officials.
Members of the Catalan National Assembly, a group of separatist activists, set up a security cordon outside the economy department's headquarters, trapping a Civil Guard squad inside as demonstrators vandalized their vehicles. Polls consistently show the region's inhabitants favor holding a referendum but are roughly evenly divided over independence from Spain.