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. Catalonian lawmakers remained divided on the issue.
OUR EARLIER REPORT (10:42 a.m.): Catalonia’s separatist lawmakers on Friday voted in favor of independence from Spain, setting up a showdown with the national government in Madrid. The regional Parliament approved the motion with 70 of 135 votes in favor of independence, 10 against, and two blank ballots. The majority of Catalan lawmakers opposing independence left the chamber ahead of the vote in protest. Shortly after Catalan Parliament held its vote, the Spanish Senate approved a government appeal to take control of the autonomous region in northeastern Spain. Thousands of people who gathered outside Catalonia’s Parliament building cheered and danced in celebration after watching the vote live on big screen televisions. Shortly after the vote, Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy called for calm, saying the rule of law would be restored in Catalonia.
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Onize is a reporter for WORLD Digital based in Abuja, Nigeria.
Leigh lives in Houston with her husband and daughter. She is the news editor for The World and Everything in It and reports on education for WORLD Digital.