Spanish court suspends Catalan Parliament amid secession push

Published: 06 October 2017 Image credit: Reuters

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Spain’s Constitutional Court has ordered the suspension of Monday’s session of the regional Catalan parliament, throwing a spanner in its plan to declare independence.

The decision was handed down after Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont suggested he would declare independence for Catalonia at the next session.

The court argued such a move would be in breach of the Spanish constitution.

The ruling upheld a challenge not from the government of Spain, but from the Socialists’ Party of Catalonia, which opposes the secession of the northern region from Spain.

But the speaker of the Catalan parliament, Carme Forcadell, accused Madrid of using the courts to deal with political problems, and said the regional parliament would ‘not be censored.’

An earlier ruling from Spain’s Constitutional Court banned the independence referendum, but Catalan authorities went ahead with the campaign anyway on Sunday this week.

Organisers of the vote claimed 90 percent of 2.2 million votes supported independence, but have yet to publish final results.

More than 800 people were injured when Spanish police conducted raids on polling booths in an attempt to thwart the referendum.

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy warned the region against making a unilateral declaration of independence, saying it would be bring “greater evils.”