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Catalan Declaration of Independence challenges Madrid

Catalan President Carles Puigdemont together with the regional leaders have signed a declaration of independence from Spain, following the disputed referendum. The ceremony took place in Catalan parliament, after the debate of the results of the referendum.

Catalan President demanded an implementation pause to to allow dialogue with the government in Madrid on the ‘divorce’ arrangement. The referendum qualified by Madrid as ‘illegal’ was organised by Catalan authorities after 18 official requests from Barcelona to Madrid to grant plebiscite were ignored. Puigdemont qualified independence Declaration not as a ‘personal’ decision, but as an outcome of the referendum results.

The Declaration calls for the recognition of Catalonia as an “independent and sovereign state”.

The Spanish central government in Madrid considers the events in Catalonia as ‘illegal’ and demands clarifications.

A 1 October referendum in the north-eastern province – which Catalan leaders say resulted in a ‘Yes’ vote for independence – was declared invalid by Spain’s Constitutional Court. Madrid also tried to stop the referendum with brutal actions of riot police crackdown on Catalan voters. Police brutality was not condemned by the EU, supporting one side in the argument – prime minister Mariano Rajoy.

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