Riot police used batons to hold back large crowds of Catalan independence supporters at Barcelona's El Prat airport on Monday.

The crowds were forced backwards and into a corner in order to secure the airport site. What appears to be tear gas released in an effort to disperse demonstrators.

The crowd were answering a call to protest from Tsunami Democratic, a movement opposing the prison sentence handed down to Catalan leaders.

Former Catalan Vice President Oriol Junqueras has been sentenced to 13 years in prison by Spain's Supreme Court for his role in the attempted secession by authorities in Barcelona in 2017.

Junqueras was among nine Catalan independence leaders who were sentenced to between nine and 13 years in prison for sedition for their part in the region's failed 2017 independence bid, which captured headlines around the world.

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