In Spain regionalism is a highly emotive issue. Since it was agreed last year that?
In Spain regionalism is a highly emotive issue. Since it was agreed last year that first Catalonia and then the Basques should have limited autonomy, Spain's other regions have been stepping up their demands for a measure of home rule. The latest of these are Castile and Leon, and marchers were but in force in the streets of Valladolid on Sunday (5 March).
SYNOPSIS: Valladolid is the capital of the province of the same name, in the north of the country, and more than 5,000 took part in the march. The marchers were mainly from the left, and they carried an assortment of communist, socialist and self-rule banners.
The marchers were calling for self rule for Castile and Leon. Castile is the region which covers much of the centre, and north of Spain, bordering the Bay of Biscay. Leon lies to the north west.
The demonstrators, who later gathered for a rally, faced some opposition to their chants of "Long live Castile and Leon". Along the route they were jeered by right-wing sympathisers, and right-wings flags were hung from windows.
Speakers demanded home rule for the regions, which are steeped in history. It was Castile that united Spain in the late 15th and 16th centuries. leon was a force in medieval days before union with Castile in 1230.
The march came the day after Basque demonstrators had tossed petrol bombs at riot police in Pamplona.