Pro-independence protest in Catalonia draws around 3,000

A pro Independence demonstrator gestures - four fingers symbolizing the four bars of the Catalonian flag, during a demonstrations to show public support for the Parliament of Catalonia, in Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, Nov. 22, 2015. Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy made his first visit to the regional capital of Catalonia on Saturday following his administration's legal push to halt an effort secessionist regional parties to declare independence from Spain by 2017. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Around 3,000 protesters have gathered in Barcelona to support an organization that seeks the creation of a Catalan state independent from Spain and urge regional lawmakers to reach an agreement to form a transitional government.

The Catalan National Assembly, with about 30,000 fee-paying members, called Sunday’s rally to lobby 10 lawmakers from the far-left CUP group to set aside differences with 62 parliamentarians from the “Together for Yes” alliance and break a logjam that is paralyzing progress toward an independent Catalonia.

The parliament of Catalonia has until Jan. 10 to elect a leader and form a government or it must call a new election.

With 72 seats, pro-secessionists would hold the majority in the 135-seat regional parliament, although they only secured 48 percent of the popular vote in September elections.

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