Political Unrest
Associated Press/Photo by Paul White

Spanish government dissolves Catalan Parliament

by Onize Ohikere & Leigh Jones
Posted 10/27/17, 03:02 pm

UPDATE: Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy dissolved the Catalan Parliament Friday evening and called for new elections Dec. 21. Rajoy made the decision after holding a special Cabinet meeting to discuss Catalan lawmakers’ vote earlier in the day to declare independence from Spain. Catalonia held a referendum earlier this month to gauge voter support for an independence move. Ninety percent of Catalonians voted for independence, although only 43 percent of the region’s residents cast ballots. The Spanish government insists the referendum was illegal.

Read more

Associated Press/Photo by Khalid Mohammed (file)

Iraqi prime minister halts troop movements in Kurdistan

by Onize Ohikere
Posted 10/27/17, 01:49 pm

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi ordered a halt to all troop movements in the northern Kurdistan region Friday, an attempt to “prevent clashes and bloodshed between the sons of one nation.” Iraqi troops are attempting to retake territory held by regional Kurdish forces, which led the fight against Islamic State militants in the area. The prime minister’s announcement follows conflicting reports about a cease-fire between Iraqi and Kurdish forces, with the U.S.-led coalition initially announcing the cease-fire and then retracting that statement a few hours later.

Read more

Associated Press/Photo by Emilio Morenatti

Spain set to revoke Catalonia’s autonomy

by Onize Ohikere
Posted 10/26/17, 11:20 am

Catalonian President Carles Puigdemont on Thursday canceled an official address ahead of the Spanish government’s plan to take control of the autonomous region by Friday. Puigdemont has come under increased pressure either to unilaterally declare independence or call for a snap election. After canceling his speech, Puigdemont said he would not call for an election, a move that could have defused tension with Spain. Catalonia on Oct. 1 held a disputed independence referendum in which a majority of voters called for separation from Spain.

Read more