reuters.com
November 29, 2013

Spain’s conservative government agreed on Friday to toughen penalties for unauthorized street protests up to a possible 600,000 euro ($816,000) fine, a crackdown that belies the peaceful record of the anti-austerity protests of recent years.

Leftists and civil rights activists have labeled the bill the “Kick in the teeth law” because it penalizes a battery of protest measures in what they say is a disregard for democracy in a country that only emerged from right-wing dictatorship in the late 1970s.

But Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, whose People’s Party (PP)has an absolute majority in parliament, has said the Citizens’ Security Law guarantees freedom and will have the support of a majority of Spaniards.

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