Catalonia is going to proclaim independence from Spain; however, this unilateral proclamation will not take place until Madrid and Barcelona hold consultations in the coming weeks – so that the independence comes on more favorable conditions for both sides. Carles Puigdemont, the leader of Catalonia, said this at the session of the Spanish Parliament on Tuesday.
‘The people’s will is that Catalonia becomes an independent state, a republic. We make this step in respect of our citizens, and we offer our parliament to delay the unilateral declaration on independence, so that we can negotiate, so that independence comes on more favorable terms,’ he said in his speech.
On Sunday, October 8, thousands of people attended a rally in Barcelona, protesting against the independence of Catalonia from Spain. Protesters gathered in the central square of the city, holding in their hands Spanish and Catalan flags. Demonstrators chanted "Catalonia is Spain" and urged to detain the president of Catalonia Carles Puigdemont.
Earlier, referendum on the withdrawal from Spain was held in Catalonia. 2.26 million out of 5.31 million Catalan voters took part in it. On the day of voting, there were clashes between law enforcers and supporters of the referendum, about 900 people were injured.
King of Spain did not recognize the referendum on independence, and the Catalan leader accused the King of Spain of "ignoring millions." Later, Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy said that his government could use constitutional powers to end the autonomy of Catalonia to prevent the region from seceding from Spain.
The division of the region is not recognized either by Madrid or the European Union. Ukraine also considers the referendum in Catalonia illegitimate.