Catalonia risks abandoning the European Union by splitting form Spain, a panicked Brussels warned today.
A Catalonia independence campaigner outside European Commission in Brussels
The EU is scrambling to avoid a Catalexit, which would see the bloc disintegrate further after an already-chaotic 18 months.
More than two million Catalan voters braved police brutality, which left 800 injured, to choose independence for Catalonia in Sunday’s disputed referendum, according to Catalan authorities.
But the EU, as well as Spain’s central government, has condemned the vote as illegal and unconstitutional and are refusing to acknowledge the result.
In a last-ditch attempt to bring Catalonia back under control European Union officials have warned quitting Spain would also mean quitting the bloc.
And major parties in the European Parliament are also going out of their way to make their own Project Fear warnings.
Today a spokesman for the European People’s Party, the largest party in the European Parliament, said Catalonia needed to acknowledge the truth.
He said: “Someone needs to tell the Catalan people the truth. If you contest the law to abandon Spain you also need to know that you abandon the EU.
A spokeswoman for the Socialists and Democrats Party said the Spanish constitution needed to be recognised and respected.
She said: “The European Parliament as representative of all European people is calling all parties to sit down and work together for a peaceful and responsible solution, in the framework of the Spanish constitution.”
It is just the latest warning issued by europhiles in a bid to first block, and then ignore the referendum.
An EU flag beside a Catalonia flag in the aftermath of Sunday’s YES victory
Last week the vote was slated by the Council of Europe (CoE), an organisation which promotes human rights, European culture and law, and democracy across the continent. It is a separate body to the EU.
The Venice Commission, the CoE’s consultative body, said the vote “does not meet the commission’s standards for a fair referendum, as it is not recognised by the Spanish Government or its constitution.
The Venice Commission’s secretary general Thomas Markert did make the point of referencing the 2014 Scottish referendum, highlighting it as an example of a fair, legally-approved vote as it gained the support of the UK government.
Catalonia referendum: Thousands of people are protesting in Barcelona following voting day violence.
And today the EU executive called for the Spanish Government and Catalan authorities to open dialogue to defuse the sometimes violent confrontation over calls for Catalonia’s independence.
European Commission’s First Vice President Frans Timmermans said: It’s time to talk.
But he warned: The constitutions of all our member states must be respected.