Catalonia’s bid for independence adds uncertainty to Spain and beyond
Date: 12/10/2017 | Source: Pyongyang Times | Read original version at source
The moves for independence of Catalonia flare up in Spain, triggering a serious social and political crisis.
Catalonia’s bid for independence has a long history.
An industrial and tourism hub which has developed with its own language and culture for over 1 000 years, Catalonia’s tax revenue takes the lion’s share of the state budget.
Amid the economic slowdown and layoff in the public sector in recent years, the Spanish government took measures to limit the region’s autonomy, resulting in growing discontent of the Catalans.
The region held an unofficial referendum on independence in November 2014, in which an absolute majority of 80 percent of voters supported independence from Spain.
Moves to hold referendum has surfaced again since 2015, when advocates of secession took a dominant position in the election of local assembly.
On September 6 Catalonia’s regional assembly passed the bill on referendum on secession from Spain.
The bill stipulates that the result of the ballot will carry legal binding force and the regional election committee of Catalonia should declare its independence no more than two days after the result is made public.
The regional autonomous government said that according to the referendum held on October 1, 90 percent voted for independence, adding that they have secured the right to achieve independence from Spain in actuality.
The central government, however, dismissed it as illegal and the Spanish constitutional court declared its result null and void.
At present, the autonomy of Catalonia has been suspended, with a state of emergency declared.
Foreign media comment that Spain now faces a serious crisis of division and the uncertainty adds unease to the European Union.