The Mossos d'Esquadra have increased their presence along the beaches in Barcelona in order to prevent pickpockets and protect beach goers against thieves working in the area (article in Catalan, El Punt). Alongside the Guardia Urbana there will be more uniformed police as well as in an increase in those in civilian clothes patrolling the area. They will also start to employ the use of specialised motorcycles that allow higher speeds. Xavier Creus, the head of the comissaria at Ciutat Vella insists that the new vehicles, which are being used throughout the city, "allow us to arrive in the place where the offense has occurred much faster." The police force are also looking to set up a oficina d'atenció al ciutadà (OAC) in Barceloneta. The increase in police presence will run through to September.
The V Festival, DJs contra la fam took place at the Encant Els market at the weekend with DJs and musicians playing and taking part for 12 hours to raise money for various charities (article in Castilian, El Periodico). The money raised will be donated to four organisations that work with people with drugs problems and AIDS. Adam Colyer, the director of the festival was quoted as saying that this year they wanted to give the money raised to the same charities as last year after rain and poor attendance resulted in not much money being raised in the previous year. Alongside musical acts there was also a group of graffiti artists whose work will be auctioned off, Aleix Gordo, one of the artists taking place said "last year, some works were sold at around €50 to €100, a very affordable price".
A musical collective have been fighting the ban on amplified street music and have started a petition, collecting signatures arguing for an allowance or "grace period" this summer (article in Catalan, El Punt). However Itziar González, councillor in Ciutat Vella said "the amplifier is unbearable in the small streets". But the measures drawn to prevent the use of amplified music have been very badly received by the collective musicians, the president of the l'associació de músics i intèrprets de carrer has spoken out against the heavy handed reaction by the local police. "The police have gone out to fight us, take our instruments and amplifiers that makes us pay exaggerated fines", says Montero. The association hope to hand in the signatures collected in September.
Also in the news: Around 200 Michael Jackson fans met on the Ramblas to pay homage to the ´king of pop´ at the weekend. Wearing white gloves the group moonwalked their way from Colon to Plaza de Catalunya. (El Mundo) This weekend saw the annual congress of Jehova Witnesses taking place in the Palau Sant Jordi. According to organisers up to 12,500 believers attended with the figure rising to 13,500 attending on Sunday (El Punt)