Spanish Supreme Court halts Catalan independence move

Spanish Constitutional Court cancels Catalan secession drive after Spanish government's application for annulment

Photo by: AFP (Archive)
Photo by: AFP (Archive)

Catalans hold Catalan independence flags during celebrations of Catalonia National Day in Barcelona on September 11, 2014.

Spanish Supreme Court decided to halt Catalan independence drive on Wednesday following application by Spain's conservative government to the Constitutional Court for the cancelation of Catalan independence process.

The decision also came after the court suspended Catalan secession motion on December 11.

The court announced the resolution process was unconstitutional and said the Catalan assembly "cannot set itself up as a source of legal and political legitimacy to the point of assuming the authority to violate the constitutional order."

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy welcomed the court decision during his speech and said "The immense majority of Spaniards who believe in Spain, national sovereignty and the equality of Spaniards will be very pleased."

Rajoy called Catalonian independence "nonsense" and underlined that it would never actualize.

Last month, pro-independence parties gained a majority of seats in the 135-seat Catalan Parliament in Barcelona, winning 75 seats, for the very first time during its regional parliamentary elections.

Parties supporting an independence from Spain perceived the election result as a confirmation of their plan to launch a process after Prime Minister Rajoy refused calls for a referendum similar to Scotland independence referendum in the UK in 2014.

In October, Spanish Parliament empowered the Supreme Court to punish authorities that do not fulfill their rulings, use their legal powers for Catalan independence process.

Latest polls show that majority of Catalans support a referendum on independence, but they are doubtful about splitting up with Spain.

According to a Centre for Opinion Studies poll published on Wednesday, 48.2 percent of Catalans want to stay as a part of Spain while 46.6 percent are backing the independence.

The Catalan Opinion Study Center (CEO) which is funded by the regional government, published a survey November 13 and showed that 47.8 percent of Catalan were against independence while  46.7 percent was favor of a Catalan republic.

Catalonia with a population of 7.5 million and 32,000 square km of areas makes up nearly 19 percent of Spain’s GDP, and has an unemployment rate of 19 percent compared to 21 percent nationwide.

It also keeps a fifth of the national economy output with its highly-industrialised and heavily-populated conditions.


TRTWorld and agencies