Walking with a flag in the authorized time slots is not a reason for sanction if the minimum distances are respected and unnecessary stops are avoided, compared to the numerous messages on WhatsApp and networks that denounce alleged police actions against those who carry the national ensign.
Various text messages, audios and videos have been circulating for days through WhatsApp and social networks like Twitter and Facebook with complaints from citizens who claim to have been warned or fined by the Police exclusively for displaying Spanish flags.
Some of these messages were disseminated as a result of the illegal demonstration on Saturday, May 2, a protest encouraged in the networks by the tweeter “Alvise Pérez” with the slogan “Caravan Government Resignation” and that encouraged to spend at noon by car or motorcycle with Spanish flags along the Paseo de la Castellana in Madrid to sound “a great whistle against Pedro Sánchez and Pablo Iglesias”.
“They said they had orders from the government to stop anyone who carried a flag of Spain; and it seems that it is very likely that I will receive a fine for carrying a flag of Spain.” “Agent, why do we have to collect the Spanish flag? On a Saturday that I go out calmly to buy, I carry my flag and it turns out that I am a criminal?” Audios like these were broadcast on WhatsApp and networks from that day on.
DATA: That demonstration was prohibited by the Government Delegation in Madrid for reasons of public health protection against the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as another one called for the same day by La Falange in front of the headquarters of the Ministry of Health , and the Police fined nobody for carrying Spanish flags, but for failing to comply with the preventive measures of the state of alarm.
Police sources consulted by EFE have explained that no one was fined for going with the flag of Spain, but that “people who could not justify their displacement due to the state of alarm were proposed for sanction.”
According to Royal Decree 463/2020 of March 14, the circulation in a private vehicle is authorized to get to and from work, health centers, financial institutions, to make purchases, to care for other people or to refuel fuel, as well as “due to force majeure or need situation”.
As for the penalties provided for motorists or motorists who cannot justify being on the street, they range from fines of 100 euros to a sentence of 3 months in prison for a crime of disobedience and 4 years for an attack on the authority.
MANIFESTATION DENIED FOR SUPPOSING A PERSONAL HAZARD
The request for the protest on day 2 with cars and motorcycles in La Castellana was denied by the Government Delegation under article tenth of the Organic Law on the Right to Assembly, which provides not to authorize demonstrations if there are “reasonable reasons” that it can have “danger to people”. “Alvise Pérez” himself gave it up for being “called off” on Twitter that same morning.
Sources of this institution have confirmed to EFE that the call was notified and denied, and that those who, despite this, participated in the protest and were identified as people who were moving in their vehicles in breach of the provisions of the state of alarm “They were proposed for sanction for skipping confinement.”
The Government Delegation in Madrid has not yet ruled on the protest, with the same format, announced by Vox for Saturday, May 23, within the framework of a general call for simultaneous car demonstrations in all the provincial capitals against the Government management and the use of the state of alarm to promote a “socio-communist agenda”.
Vox spokesman Jorge Buxadé argues that in these demonstrations the security conditions for the participants’ individual and public health will be guaranteed, so if the government prohibits them, it would be “using abusively, disproportionately and illegally the alarm state to impose a disguised state of exception. “
In the absence of an official decision, the Jupol police union advises analyzing whether prohibiting these protests can generate more problems than authorizing them, while, on behalf of Unidas Podemos, Pedro Sánchez’s government partner, his spokesman in Congress, Pablo Echenique, considers legitimate the right to hold a demonstration by car if it complies with health safety regulations.
THEY HAVE NOT PENALTED FOR MAKING CUCEROLADES
Apart from the motorist protests, messages on WhatsApp and social networks also proliferate these days, denouncing the actions of the Police against pedestrians for participating in pan-rallies against the Government and for carrying the flag of Spain on the street.
Attention has focused on Madrid’s Barrio de Salamanca, specifically on Calle Núñez de Balboa, where protests by citizens against the Government have taken place these days without always keeping the minimum safety distance between people established in health regulations, but during the week there have been specific calls for demonstrations in other places.
For this Saturday, several calls of this type have already been broadcast on WhatsApp in Madrid, all of them starting at 8:30 pm: Some call to concentrate in certain squares or roundabouts with “masks, gloves and safety distance”, others invite you to stroll down an avenue with Spanish flags “scrupulously respecting the hours and safety distances” …
The Police have sanctioned passers-by for participating in saucepans or protesting against the Executive with flags on the street? Both the Government Delegation in Madrid and the National Police deny it and explain that only those who failed to comply with the rules of the state of alarm have been punished.
Regarding the protests in the Núñez de Balboa street, the Government delegate in Madrid, José Manuel Franco, explained this Thursday in statements to the Cadena SER that, before a meeting in which a hundred people participated, the police told them that “they were not keeping adequate security measures” and proposed for sanction 13 people who refused to disperse.
REGULATION PREVENTS UNNECESSARY AGGLOMERATIONS AND STOPPINGS
The main police unions have also defended that the agents intervene in any agglomeration of citizens who fail to comply with the state of alarm, be they concentrations or big bottles, “without chasing flags” and acting only against those who fail to comply with the distancing measures.
They are therefore in agreement with the implementation of the device that Franco has announced to avoid crowds in the streets, to guarantee that the law is complied with and the health safety distance is kept, “not to repress any type of demonstration and casserole.”
As a more direct antecedent, the Superior Court of Justice of Madrid (TSJM) agreed with the Government by rejecting on April 30 the appeal filed by La Falange against the ban on the concentration that it had called on May 2 in front of the Ministry of Health.
In that case, the magistrates of the TSJM stressed that the decision of the Government Delegation was not based on the application of the decree of the state of alarm, but on the “need to avoid spreading the pandemic with its consequences of contagions, deaths and sick”.
Since then, what has changed is the regulation of restrictions on population movements: On day 2, Order SND / 380/320, from the Ministry of Health, came into force, authorizing people between 14 and 70 years of age one-hour walks between 6 and 10 in the morning and between 8 and 11 at night.
By virtue of this regulation, anyone who is in that age range can walk from 20 hours, with a flag or with what they want to carry, accompanied by a person with whom they live and up to a distance not exceeding one kilometer from Your domicile.
Of course, you must always maintain “an interpersonal distance with third parties of at least two meters” and, in addition, you must avoid “unnecessary stops on roads or spaces for public use”. And that is what many did not fulfill in the videos that have circulated these days with street protests.
– Government Delegation in Madrid.
– National Police.
– Organic Law 9/1999, of April 21, amending Organic Law 9/1983, of July 15, regulating the Right of Assembly.
– Order SND / 380/2020, of April 30, on the conditions in which non-professional physical activity can be carried out outdoors during the health crisis situation caused by COVID-19.
– Royal Decree 463/2020, of March 14, declaring the state of alarm for the management of the health crisis situation caused by COVID-19.
– Statements to the Cadena SER from the Government delegate in Madrid, José Manuel Franco.