A rally of Spanish right-wing Falangists broke up in the capital, Madrid, on Friday (29 October) in uproar, fist fights and quarrels after one speaker spoke of shortcomings in the rule of the late General Franco.
GV Flags outside Congress Hall in Madrid
GV Right-wing leader speaking while audience listens (2 shots)
SV Scuffles on stage while audience chants
SV PAN Falangist youths singing and giving right arm salute as audience does likewise
SV Youth led away by police outside hall
SV Police captain hustled by right wingers outside (2 shots)
SV Right wingers sing and surround police, give right hand salute and chant (3 shots)
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: A rally of Spanish right-wing Falangists broke up in the capital, Madrid, on Friday (29 October) in uproar, fist fights and quarrels after one speaker spoke of shortcomings in the rule of the late General Franco.
SYNOPSIS: More than 2000 supporters attended the rally in the city's Congress Hall. It was held to mark the 43rd anniversary of the Falange Party, the ideological core of the National Movement - the only party allowed by General Franco. During his speech Falange official Sigfrido Hillens referred to the shortcomings of the Franco regime. And it was this that started the crowd booing and whistling. On the stage scuffles broke out and punches were thrown.
Senor Hillens had called on the party to look to the future rather than the past. He said that much importance had been attached to the economic progress achieved by General Franco since the 1936-39 Civil War, but added "Even in the Soviet Union, one lives better today than in 1936".
Several hundred people shouting "Franco, Franco" marched out of the rally and were dispersed by police waiting outside the hall. Among those who walked out was lawyer Blas Pinar, leader of the extreme right political party "Fierza Nueva" (New Force).
But later many of the demonstrators became so excited that the police themselves were surrounded by the chanting mob and reinforcements had to help get police officers out of the crowd to safety. It had also been a busy day for the police in other parts of the city as riot squads fired teargas and baton-charged 1000 striking bus drivers who'd been protesting against soldiers running their buses.