Hong Kong protesters have come out to give their support for Catalonian separatists, proudly exhibiting Catalonia’s flag in a rally on Thursday, October 24.
Not unlike Hong Kong only a couple of decades ago, Catalonia is the wealthiest region in Spain, in large part due to its booming tourism industry. It also has its own language, flag, culture, and a large patriotic population.
In 2017, Catalonians participated in a lengthy, albeit failed, bid for separation from Spain, claiming the Spanish government was sucking the region dry of its wealth through redistribution, and imposing unfair rules on its people.
“The context (of Catalonia and Hong Kong) is different,” Ricard Bosom, a Catalonian tourist in Hong Kong told Reuters. “Both are different stories, but in general terms … it is about an oppressive and tyrannical state against a group of people that are trying to do something different and they are not listened to.”
In response to what many have called unfair sentencing of nine leaders of the separatist movement, Catalonians have begun to protest once again, and some Hong Kong sympathizers have chosen to throw their support behind them.
According to Channel News Asia, many of the Hong Kong protesters seen with the Catalonian flag were chanting “a fight for freedom together,” likely hoping to achieve a more global appeal to democracy by supporting the foreign separatist movement.