The Independent – As Madrid turns the austerity screws, in the provinces the separatists are making gains

High in the Los Ancares region of Galicia, in the tiny hamlet of Quindous, a newspaper cutting on the wall of the main bar shows two Barcelona taxis parked outside its front door. The drivers – both relatives of Inés, the bar’s owner – had been making a decent living in Barcelona. But the recession bit deeper and business dried up. So they got in their taxis and embarked on the 500-mile drive west, hoping to find work back home in Galicia.

Like thousands of others, their quest proved fruitless, and they joined the ranks of the unemployed. “People came back hoping to work on the land,” Inés said. “But there’s barely a living to be had at it now. For young folk there’s barely anything to be had here at all.”

Unemployment has hit 21 per cent in Galicia, and Inés is far from alone in her worries about her area’s economic prospects. While once it was proud that Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy hailed from this far-western region, now he is seen as more of a liability as local elections near.

Read @ The Independent