Catalan parliament votes to start separating from Spain

Defying Constitutional Court, central gov't to appeal resolution

27 July, 20:28

    Catalonian separatist movement steps ups its battle for independence as Parliament approves a process for 'separation' from Spain Catalonian separatist movement steps ups its battle for independence as Parliament approves a process for 'separation' from Spain

    MADRID - The regional parliament of Catalonia on Wednesday approved a resolution to begin seceding from Spain, in open defiance of the Constitutional Court. The decision was approved by 72 regional MPs out of 135. Ten MPs from the CSP group linked to Podemos, Partido Popular and Ciudadanos walked out of the assembly and the Socialists did not vote. A recent poll shows that 48% of the Catalan population currently supports independence compared with 43% against it.

    The Spanish government under outgoing prime minister Mariano Rajoy announced it would be filing an appeal with the Constitutional Court against the resolution passed earlier by the Catalan government. Deputy Prime Minister Soraya de Santamaria said that the announcement by the Catalan MPs was a ''very serious matter'', coming as it did despite a veto placed on it by the central government, adding that the appeal would be approved by the government on Friday.

    Spain's Constitutional Court had in recent days prohibited the regional parliament in Barcelona from voting on it. The resolution was presented by the pro-secessionist groups Junts Pel Si and CUP. The anti-secessionist parties - PP, Ciudadanos and PSC - have spoken out against the ''illegality'' of the decision. PP parliamentary chief Xavier Garcia Albiol has said that the act is tantamount to a ''coup'' against the government in Madrid and warned that there will be a price to pay for it. Catalan regional president and pro-secessionist Carles Puidgemont instead says that the position taken by the regional MPs is ''legitimate'' and has in recent months confirmed that the goal is to achieve an independent ''Catalan Republic'' by the end of 2017.

     

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