Catalan's mayors summoned over independence referendum

16 September, 2017, 01:11 | Author: Ruben Patrick
  • The pro-independence movement in Catalonia is rallying for a referendum on October 1

Should the referendum, which is scheduled to take place on October 1st, turn out with a "yes" vote for independence, the region's parliament would declare Catalonia an independent republic from Spain.

"Due to the situation of manifest illegality in Catalonia, [the government] has established a mechanism of payment to guarantee public services to the Catalans", Montoro said at a press conference.

The Catalans are defying a court order to suspend the 1 October vote.

Catalan separatists were poised Thursday to launch their campaign for a banned independence referendum in a major high-profile event, despite mounting pressure to stop the vote.

Finance Minister Cristóbal Montoro said a mechanism had been approved for the state to take control of the autonomous region's finances.

This new system will allow the Spanish state to "replace the region for the majority of essential spending", he added.

He said the arrangement implied "political control that is not related to the objectives of budget stability or to the purposes of state legislation in this matter".

In a TV interview Ms Sáenz de Santamaría warned that Civil Guard had ways to close down the new referendum websites set up after the authorities pulled the government's official referendum website on Wednesday.

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Earlier this week, over a million people gathered in Barcelona, Catalonia's capital, in a show of support for independence on Catalonia's national day 'La Diada'.

"We have reached this moment stronger than what many had thought and wanted, as we are proving by responding firmly to each threat", he said.

Spanish prime minister Mariano Rajoy has vowed to do "whatever is necessary" to prevent a referendum on secession in Catalonia.

Among the most populated cities, many will not get involved, and question marks remain over the biggest of them all - Barcelona.

The letter asks for a "political dialogue to be opened, based on the legitimacy that each of us represents, to make something possible that in a democracy is never a problem, and much less a crime: listening to the voice of the people". He added that if an independent Catalonia chose to join the European Union, it must follow the usual path to membership.

Catalonia's vice president Oriol Junqueras, who is in charge of budget affairs, sent a letter to Spain's central government saying he would not provide a weekly account of his government's spending.

Spain's constitutional court suspended the action taken by the regional Parliament of Catalonia law on the procedure of the separation region.

The letter accused the Spanish state of "an unprecedented repression offensive".

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