At least 160,000 people holding placards and banners, marched through the streets of Barcelona on Saturday demanding that Spain take in more refugees seeking asylum.

Failing in its pledge to resettle 17,000 refugees from the war-ravaged areas of the Middle East within two years, Spain has accepted just over a thousand people since 2015. Police estimated the demonstrators to be around 160, though organisers claimed it was nearly double that number.

Organiser Ruben Wagensberg said what was clear after the protest was that the Catalunya region of Spain is prepared to welcome refugees fleeing violence in the Middle East and Africa.

“There is an ample consensus in Catalunya to demand that the Madrid government’s commitments are upheld, he said.

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