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"Bella ciao, bella ciao, bella ciao ciao ciao..." These evocative Italian lyrics have been heard at Catalan independence rallies on occasions recently. But now video director Hèctor Suñol has put together a clip showing emblematic moments in the independence process, and the imprisonment of its leaders, using this powerful anti-fascist anthem as its soundtrack. Bella Ciao was one of the songs adopted by the Italian partisans who fought against the German occupiers in World War Two, and its bitter-sweet lyrics refer to the sacrifices made by those who fight for liberty. Beginning with a quote from Mahatma Gandhi ("First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they attack you, then you win"), the video clip features images of key moments in the Catalan parliament, the entry of the imprisoned independence leaders to testify in court, images of mass demonstrations, and even shots from the famous election spot for the CUP party, featuring an old broken-down van... All of this as the lyrics tell of a struggle against an invader, of sacrifice and death, and of regeneration and beauty.

Bella Ciao from Hector Suñol on Vimeo.

Bella Ciao - "Goodbye beautiful" - was originally a folk song, as was adapted by the Italian partisans who fought the fascists in the Bologna area of northern Italy. After the Second World War its popularity spread around the world and in the 1960s it was covered by stars such as Yves Montand, becoming one of the emblematic sounds of the student uprisings of May 1968 in Paris. It crossed the Atlantic too, especially through the version sung by Chile's Quilapayún. The last episode of the first season of current Spanish TV series La casa de papel also concluded with a version of Bella Ciao. During the Franco regime it was considered a subversive song, and its broadcast was prohibited by the censor.