SPAIN is in the grip a constitutional crisis as THOUSANDS of Catalonians took to the streets of Barcelona, to protest the Spanish Government’s attempts to stop a banned referendum on Catalonia’s Independence from Spain.
Spain’s embattled Prime Minister, Mariano Rajoy has called on Catalan separatist leaders to halt the “escalation”.
“Stop this escalation of radicalism and disobedience once and for all,” Mariano Rajoy said in a statement on Spanish TV.
The independence row has sparked one of the worst political crises since Spain became a democratic country.
The Spanish government argues that any referendum on Catalan independence would be ‘illegal’ because the country’s 1978 constitution makes ZERO provision for a vote on self-determination.
Catalonia’s president has accused the Spanish government of suspending the region’s self-governance after police attempted to stop a vote on Catalonian independence
Pro-Establishment Police RAIDED more than a dozen regional offices and arrested 14 senior officials in a bid to SILENCE democracy.
Carles Puigdemont, the head of Catalonia’s government, described the raids as a “a co-ordinated police assault” that showed that Madrid Establishment “has de facto suspended self-government and applied a de facto state of emergency” in Catalonia.
He also appeared to draw a parallel between the raids and the repression and abuses of the Franco dictatorship, tweeting: “We will not accept a return to the darkest times. The government is in favour of liberty and democracy.”
Speaking after an emergency ministerial meeting, Puigdemont vowed the poll would go ahead.
“We reaffirm our peaceful response,” he said. “The Spanish government has crossed a red line and become a democratic disgrace.”
The mayor of Barcelona, Ada Colau, called the raids “a democratic scandal” and said Catalans would defend their institutions.
The referendum is scheduled to take place on October 1.