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m3n4.net October 18, 2018


Huge demonstration against Catalan independence in Barcelona

09 October 2017, 12:26 | Tara Lloyd

Huge demonstration against Catalan independence in Barcelona

Protesters joined by firefighters raise their hands as they gather during a general strike in Barcelona Tuesday

October 8: Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has insisted that his government will do everything in its power, including invoking Article 155 of the Constitution, to stop the Catalan Government declaring independence from the country.

Mr Vargas Llosa is also among 60 Spain-based intellectuals and academics who have signed an open letter asking the global community not to support the idea of external mediation as a solution to the crisis in Catalonia.

Rajoy's comments came as thousands of people throughout Spain held rallies Saturday calling for dialogue over the independence push.

This weekend, Rajoy told Spanish newspaper El Pais that any declaration of independence by Catalonia would be rejected.

The Spanish official added that the Catalan movement aimed at obtaining more autonomy for the region should be peaceful and be conducted "within the framework of treaties".

Some of Catalonia's biggest businesses began taking steps to transfer their registered headquarters to other cities in Spain.

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Some protesters called for the region's separatist president Carles Puigdemont to go to jail for holding a vote on independence in defiance of the Spanish Government and courts.

"Spain will be Spain and will continue to be it for a long time", the prime minister added. Madrid responded to the vote with force, sending thousands of police to the region to shut down the vote. Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, meanwhile, refused to recognize the fact that a referendum took place as well as its results.

Spanish Civil Guard officers break through a door at a polling station for the banned independence referendum where Catalan President Carles Puigdemont was supposed to vote in Sant Julia de Ramis, Spain October 1, 2017.

The focus has shifted to Tuesday, when Puigdemont is set to address the regional parliament "to report on the current political situation".

Rajoy's government has repeatedly refused to grant Catalonia permission to hold a referendum on grounds that it is unconstitutional since it would only poll a portion of Spain's 46 million residents.

When asked if that would include an article in the Constitution allowing the suspension of Catalonia's autonomy, Rajoy said, "I am not absolutely ruling out anything that the law allows".

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There is speculation that the parliament will declare independence unilaterally at its next sitting.

The crisis has raised fears of unrest in the northeastern region, a tourist-friendly area of 7.5 million people that accounts for a fifth of Spain's economy.

GettyTens of thousands rallied against the region's independence bid from Spain.

It remains unclear what he plans to say, although some leaders hope he will use the opportunity to make a declaration of independence.

Raul Briones, 40 wearing a Spanish national soccer team shirt said: "The people who have come to demonstrate don't feel Catalan so much as Spanish. Here they are always with their doors open for dialogue, but I think this will end badly", he said.

"If Catalonia has the strength, and the will, and the determination to become an independent country, then we could turn our country into a Mediterranean Denmark."

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