After 32 hours blocking the main road across the Pyrenees to Catalonia, protest platform Tsunami Democràtic has called an end to the action. Now, they have encouraged supporters to head to two new sites: one further south in Girona, another along the border in the Basque Country.
Shortly before 5pm, the N-II (a motorway which runs down to Barcelona then on to Madrid) was opened. An hour it was the neighbouring AP-7 (a neighbouring motorway which runs down the Mediterranean coast). That had been blocked since 9am yesterday, first right on the border itself, and then this morning at La Jonquera, the last Catalan village heading north. It took seven hours for normal traffic flow to be re-established.
The action, the most significant so far from Tsunami, led to the border being closed for more than 30 hours, 20 people being arrested and more than a hundred cars being removed by tow trucks, now waiting for their owners to collect them from Perpignan.
Of the 20 arrested, one is the driver of a lorry who had tried to force his way through the crowd. Today, the tension had grown hand-in-hand with the fatigue. At La Jonquera, protesters had removed 51 vehicles that were stopped on the Catalan side. A total of 12 were removed by tow trucks.
More than 3,000 people gathered at the border over these two days, many of them spending the night there. At 8am, as French anti-riot police arrived, they started leaving cross-country under the threat of pepper spray. No one was injured, but 19 were arrested: 18 by French police and two by the Mossos, Catalonia's police force, one of whom was the driver above. The other was a man trying to get to his car who ended up jumping on a Mossos officer:
Even once all the protesters had left, it took seven hours for workers to clear the road. There weren't just cars left around, but also construction materials from ongoing works used to build barricades, as well as remains of the camp. That included the stage set up on the border which yesterday had seen a range of performances.
The protest was moved to La Jonquera, blocking the AP-7 and the N-II. The former wasn't reopened until 4pm, the latter until 5pm, although both remained slow-flowing. Anti-riot officers from the Mossos, as well as Spain's Civil Guard and National Police Corps worked to clear the roads and avoid protesters being able to block them again.