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By Max Bernhard
Spanish car maker Seat will halt production at its main site in Martorell near Barcelona until Friday night, citing continuing protests over the jail sentences for nine Catalan separatist leaders.
"After verifying the high risk that ongoing demonstrations pose to the mobility of employees in the Barcelona area and the delivery of material, Seat management and unions have agreed to halt the production shifts at the Martorell factory from this afternoon until tomorrow night," the Volkswagen AG (VOW.XE) subsidiary said in a statement Thursday.
During the night to Thursday, thousands of pro-independence protesters took to the streets in cities across Catalonia. Some marches turned violent and demonstrators in parts of Barcelona set fire to garbage bins, leading to clashes with riot police. Pro-independence groups and unions have previously called for a general strike on Friday.
"Our responsibility as a company also consists in protecting the people who work at Seat. For this reason, we have made this decision exclusively to avoid them from getting stranded on their commutes to and from work," Seat said.
The company said its headquarters will remain open for employees that are able to commute unhindered. Its majority unions aren't participating in the general strike on Friday, it added.
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(END) Dow Jones Newswires
October 17, 2019 10:00 ET (14:00 GMT)
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