The youth organisation Arran yesterday staged coordinated protests against tourism in Barcelona, Palma and Valencia. The actions were the same in that banners were hung from tourist sightseeing buses and carried a message of stopping tourist "massification" in the Catalan Lands.
Arran stressed that the protests did not seek any confrontation with tourists or with workers. They were peaceful and symbolic. On Twitter, however, the organisation stated that the working class in the Catalan Lands is on "a war footing against the tourism model".
The protest in Palma occurred when the bus stopped at Bellver Castle. Only two individuals were involved. As well as the banner, a couple of smoke canisters were let off.
The town hall responded by condemning the protest, observing that any debate should be had without harming or disrupting public services. A statement read: "Palma is an open, plural city which welcomes everyone who wants to visit us." It went on to say the town hall is moving towards a sustainable tourism model that generates quality employment and respects cultural and architectural heritage. The statement also noted that some principles of the administration's political decision-making are designed "to curb the damage of tourist massification".
The protesters soon left the bus, which was how things were in Barcelona and Valencia as well. A spokesperson for Barcelona town hall, Gerardo Pisarello, described the incident as "symbolic". It did not provoke "any incidents" and no damage was caused to the vehicle.