Thousands of people took part in the Diada per la Llengua, the day to defend the local language and home rule, organised by the Obra Cultural Balear (OCB). It was a festive occasion in which the local authorities, including chief minister Francesc Antich, joined in. An estimated 2'000 people took part in the march from the Plaza España to the Parc de la Mar, a parade which included Majorcan pipers, the giant figures from the Palma city hall and figures wearing large papier mache heads. Antich said that it was encouraging to see so many people turning out to defend the language, adding that it made the government more committed to its programme based on protection of the environment, promotion of a Balearic identity and the search for a solidary economy. In the Parc de la Mar, there were various workshops and other activities for adults and children, and writer Maria de la Pau Janer read a manifesto calling for greater defence of the language. She said that promotion of the use of Catalan should be a priority at all levels. Miquel Vicens, president of the Majorcan Tourism Board, made a speech calling for greater political and financial autonomy and management of crucial areas for the islands such as the airport.
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