The Catalan protest platform Tsunami Democràtic has confirmed that the action it is planning for this Wednesday's El Clásico football match will be visible live on television. The platform, which has been leading the strong Catalan pro-independence protests since October's court verdicts, is thus implying that the action will take place while the high-interest Barça-Real Madrid match is underway in Barcelona, and has reiterated that its goal is to achieve visibility for the "Spain, sit and talk" message.
In an interview with Catalan public television's Frequently Asked Questions programme on Saturday, an incognito spokesperson for Tsunami Democràtic stated that its intention was not to block access to the Camp Nou ground for either of the two teams, or the referee. Nor will the objective be the suspension of the match. "If Tsunami has never said it wants the game to be suspended, it would be very strange to carry out this action," he said.
"Are you at Tsunami convinced that the action you take will be seen live on television? "Yes"— Preguntes freqüents
The Tsunami spokesperson added that the intention of making an international impact through the planned protest had been communicated to the FC Barcelona club and that, up till now, there had been no positive response from the club. However, the platform has left the door open for Barça to accept the action and considers that it would be a "negative consequence" if the "largest sports club in Catalonia" were to avoid taking any stand on a "social problem like this one".
The organizers of the action have thus appealed to Barça players to position themselves on the issue and recalled in an interview that players like centre-back Sergi Roberto gave their views on the controversial jail sentences handed down to pro-independence leaders in October. "Many of them have a view on the subject and perhaps they would like to make it public," said Tsunami.
The Tsunami Democràtic interviewee asserted that the world of sport cannot remain isolated from social problems. "Administrators and players need to understand that these issues directly affect the members who own the clubs," he said.
How will Spanish authorities respond?
For Tsunami, it will be interesting to see how, for example, Spain might justify a possible blockage of access to the internet for thousands of people waiting to enter a football stadium. The protest platform spokesperson commented that it would be difficult for police to distinguish demonstrators present for the Tsunami protest called at 4pm from spectators heading to the Barça stadium simply to watch the match. "They can't demand ID from thousands of people [in the street]," the interviewee argued. He also emphasized that a state that investigates its citizens for exercising rights that are recognized in the Spanish Constitution "has a problem".
Kick-off for the La Liga match is set for 8pm CET, on Wednesday 18th December.