Farmers clash with police in Almeria

Convoy chaos in Almeria

Agricultural workers preparing to protest in Almeria. Credit: la_coag/X

The line between the right to protest and causing an illegal obstruction is becoming an increasing challenge for authorities, none more so than in Almeria.

On Tuesday, March 12, farmers across several Spanish cities took to the streets, signalling the continuing unrest within the agricultural sector.

In Almeria, the situation resulted in the National Police charging against protesters who were blocking the port, resulting in one arrest and severe traffic congestion.

Demand for fair trade

Farmers are rallying against unchecked imports of agricultural goods from outside the EU. They argue this creates unfair competition and highlights a grim future with dwindling interest in farming, potentially leaving the fields barren.

Disruptions across Almeria

The agricultural protests, instigated by COAG, Asaja, and UPA, have led to significant disruptions. Slow-moving convoys on the A-7 from Santa Maria del Aguila to Murcia and from El Alquian towards Malaga caused extended traffic jams.

Shortly after 10:00 am, a large convoy of vehicles and lorries began to travel at low speed along the road in the direction of the capital’s fishing port.

Despite these disruptions, the General Directorate of Traffic extended yellow warnings, though no further incidents were reported.

Farmers want concrete plan of action

The Agriculture Minister, Carmen Crespo, described the situation as ‘a question of justice’. ‘What they ask is to put “black on white” and sign “something concrete” to be able to leave the demonstrations,’ she stated.

Crespo emphasised the need for a definitive plan to address the farmers’ concerns, hinting at ongoing negotiations to reach a satisfying agreement.

Andalucia has already sought ‘flexibility’ in certain Common Agricultural Policy measures, acknowledging the challenges posed by drought conditions.

Crespo underscored the farmers’ willingness to halt the demonstrations, provided there are tangible commitments.

‘They are willing not to continue with the demonstrations. It is not an issue that they want, but they want something concrete to be signed and to ask Europe for each of the actions that have been requested on many occasions and have not yet been fulfilled,’ she concluded.

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Written by

John Ensor

Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina. He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.