In Spain, the arrest of Catalan rapper Pablo Hasel for insulting the King sparked debate about freedom of expression in the country. A conflict arose between the coalition partners.
In Spain, the convictions of rapper Pablo Hasel for “insulting the king” have rekindled the debate on freedom of expression in the country.
As protests continued to demand Hasel’s release, Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez said on Friday that Spanish democracy “is obliged to expand and improve freedom of expression as soon as possible.”
“Democracy never justifies violence,” Sánchez added, adding that the use of violence in demonstrations is “unacceptable.”
Disagreement between coalition partners
Pablo Iglesias, leader of the left-wing populist party Podemos, the coalition’s junior partner, said Hasel’s arrest raised doubts about Spanish democracy. Podemos deputy Pablo Echenique also posted his support for the protesters on social media.
Podemos’s stance on the protests sparked disagreements among coalition partners, and the Podemos Party’s failure to condemn violence in the protests drew criticism.
The government is expected to make legal changes to avoid similar arrests in the future. However, although the government announced last week that it will try to make freedom of expression laws less restrictive, this does not affect Hasel’s arrest. Therefore, Podemos announced that it would request an amnesty for Hasel.
Hasel, known for her radical leftist line, was sentenced to 9 months in prison for her social media posts “praising terrorism” and insulting the royal family.
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez reacted to protests that began demanding the release of rap artist Pablo Hasel, who was jailed for his controversial tweets.
Sánchez, “Spain is a country with full democracy and the use of violence in democratic countries is unacceptable, whatever happens,” he said.
Nearly 100 people are reportedly detained in the protests that take place over three nights. As protesters clashed with police in Barcelona, security forces were reported to intervene with batons and rubber bullets at protesters by throwing flammable materials and stones at them. Dozens of protesters and police are reported to have been injured in the demonstrations.
The protests are reported to have spread from the Catalonia region, where they began, to other cities in the country. The demonstrations are expected to continue into the weekend.
Meanwhile, Spanish newspapers gave extensive coverage to the issue. El Periódico de Catalunya, He included the following opinions in his article: “This is not a matter of taste and color.” It is unacceptable to imprison an artist for his words. “The main issue in this discussion is not whether what the rapper said in his piece was pleasant or not. … Hasél (which is very important) goes to jail for what he sings and the lyrics, not for any other reason. His sentence is an attack on the now frequently manipulated idea of free speech and regimes that still want to call themselves democracy.
On the other hand, The world newspaper, “The roads to incarceration are paved with petty crimes. The rapper deserved this punishment, ”he said. “Reasonable people find the lawsuit appropriate, but they oppose it resulting in prison. This is good. … But it should not be overlooked that the path to incarceration can begin with a misdemeanor. Failure to pay the traffic fine can lead to a jump from one crime to another, leading to a conviction that will ultimately result in a prison sentence. In fact, it seems that this will be the fate of the person named Hasél, who was declared a hero by a group that was angry at ordinary people who told an inappropriate joke.