A disturbing video showing police in Spain beating unarmed female protesters with batons before arresting them on Friday after a protest against abortion reforms is widely being condemned online.
The video, which was posted on YouTube on Saturday, took the Internet by storm, garnering over 300,000 views over the weekend.
A draft bill recently introduced in Spain to restrict access to abortions in the country has triggered several demonstrations in the country. Around 500 activists reportedly gathered in front of the Ministry of Justice building in Madrid, protesting against the approval of the reformed Abortion Act, which – according to the activists – could lead to dangerous, illegal and clandestine abortions, putting lives at risk.
The protesters also called for the resignation of Justice Minister Jose Alberto Ruiz-Gallardón.
The footage in the video above is from one of the demonstrations carried out by pro-abortionist group “We Decide.” Though initially peaceful, the protest turned violent when the Spanish police had a nasty exchange of words with the activists. A few moments later, police officers pounced on them, striking the women with batons, knocking them down.
Eventually, three “We Decide” protesters were detained for disobedience, resistance to arrest and also for assault on a law enforcement officer, according to the Spanish language version of The Huffington Post. This move caused even more outrage online where people sharing the disturbing footage said it was an act of “police brutality, intimidation tactics and repression.”