A chaotic 24 hours in Spain's Catalonia region

Hope Soto
October 5, 2017

"It is a duty for any government to uphold the rule of law, and this sometimes requires the proportionate use of force", European Commission First Vice President Frans Timmermans told the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France.

More than 900 people were injured after Spanish police attempted to halt the vote by raiding polling stations, beating would-be voters and firing rubber bullets at crowds.

The Catalan government announced that 90 per cent of nearly 2.3 million voters had voted in favour of independence. During Spain's June friendly against Colombia in Murcia, a city in southeast Spain, he was jeered by supporters who oppose Catalonia independence.

Some have criticized the European Union for "double-standards", saying its talk of upholding democratic values appeared hollow given its opposition to the public vote on independence.

Barcelona said that none of its professional or youth teams will practise today, and the club headquarters will be closed as a reaction to government attempts to stop the referendum on Sunday. "We want a new understanding of the Spanish state", he said.

In response, King Felipe VI accused Catalan leaders of shattering democratic principles and dividing society. He's the co-author of an article in The Nation headlined "Have Spain and Catalonia Reached a Point of No Return?"

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Mr. Puigdemont has said that the government of Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy is returning Spain to the authoritarianism of the former dictator, Gen. Francisco Franco.

Meanwhile, Spain's justice minister warned that any declaration of independence could lead to article 155 of the country's constitution being invoked, which allows the national government to intervene in the running of an autonomous region.

More than 840 people needed medical assistance following clashes with riot police in ugly scenes as part of Spain's deepest constitutional crisis for decades. He said Brussels had been timid and lacked courage on the matter.

Catalonia accounts for around 20 percent of Spain's entire gross domestic product, making a general strike potentially devastating for the country.

The central government in Madrid said the referendum was illegal.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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