CATALONIA | Undeterred by arrests, ballot seizures, and a court ruling that the vote would be illegal, Catalonia held an independence referendum today. The Spanish government cracked down violently. Police raided polling stations, forcibly removed would-be voters, and attacked protesters. The Catalan government says 337 people have been injured so far. Predata signals that anticipate civil unrest and security disruptions surged in the days before the vote and remain elevated, suggesting further demonstrations and clashes are forthcoming.
Moreover, in the days leading up to the vote, single-day activity around YouTube videos related to past incidents of police violence in Catalonia twice reached its highest level since April, suggesting demonstrators were prepared for the crackdown.