- Title: SPAIN: Thousands protest against Spanish immigration law
- Date: 18th October 2009
- Summary: PEOPLE TALKING AT END OF PROTEST/ MUSIC IN THE BACKGROUND PEOPLE WATCHING MAN PERFORM ON STAGE AT DEMONSTRATION
- Embargoed: 1st November 2009 23:49
- Location: Spain
- Country: Spain
- Topics: Domestic Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA571TSWQTRCCO9WDOLKRRMNMAD
- Aspect Ratio: 4:3
- Story Text: Thousands took to the streets of Madrid on Saturday (October 17), to protest against a reform of the immigration law currently being proposed in the Spanish parliament.
Over 70 organisations gathered in Atocha under the slogan "Lets Stop the Reform on the Immigration Law", where they said the new law would breach human rights and would be a backwards move for the rights already established for immigrants.
Demonstrators marched holding banners and chanting "No person is illegal" and "Down with walls at the borders".
Colombian immigrant Teofilo Rangel, said the amendment should be stopped.
"They should stop that immigration law. And please, we should coexist and hug each other because the world belongs to everyone. They don't need to put up more walls."
Many protesters said they particularly opposed the proposed extension of detention time of illegal immigrants from 40 to 60 days, the limiting of right to family regrouping and the existence of detention centres.
The protest started at 1130 local (0930 GMT) and ended around 1300 (1100GMT) with a small concert at the Plaza Tirso de Molina.
Organisers included immigration organisations from Ecuador, Bolivia, Argentina, Colombia, Peru, Chile and Paraguay as well as human rights organisations such as Cedehu, Apdhe and CEAR.
Protester Maria Luisa Ajona from Spain said she wanted to fight for everyone to have equal rights.
"No man is illegal. So I want to fight so that everyone has rights," she said.
The Commission for Work and Immigration will debate in Parliament the amendment on October 20 and will then handover the text for approval.
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