Spain Minister brands Catalonia independence referendum 'mockery of democracy'

01 October, 2017, 00:48 | Author: Julio Duncan
  • Pep Guardiola

Supporters of Catalan independence began occupying polling stations on Friday, setting up a possible confrontation with police who have been ordered to clear them out by Sunday morning to ensure a referendum can not go ahead.

A legally binding vote is planned for October 1 2017, with officials insisting it will go ahead despite the Spanish government declaring it illegal and sending in police chiefs to stop it.

In another regional election, Catalonia's pro-independence parties narrowly win the most seats. A cruise ship and other boats together housing some 16,000 Spanish national police officers brought from other regions are docked in Barcelona's harbor in an attempt to stop the vote.

"In the case of independence, Catalan teams in La Liga - Barcelona, Espanyol and Girona - will have to decide where they want to play: in the Spanish league or a neighbouring country like Italy, France or the Premier League", he said.

Enric Millo said parents and students were occupying 163 schools in the region and that police had been ordered to clear the buildings by 6am, ahead of the polling stations' planned 9am opening.

The autonomous region handles policing and some health and education policies, but Spain runs key areas like taxes, defense and ports.

The president of the Catalan National Assembly, Jordi Sanchez, called on Spanish police forces to "appeal to their conscience" and let the Catalan people "express themselves in freedom".

"The Mossos have come to see what we are doing and they've seen we're having a party", said 45-year-old Ferran Taberner who was at the school with his daughter.

Catalan referendum vote police
Riot police clashed with voters on Sunday. Getty Images

"We need to coordinate it to ensure that there are actually lengthy lines to provide the impression around the world that we're gonna vote", recommendations delivered to voters by it's planners explained.

Any volunteer staffing a voting station with use of a census listing eligible voters would be liable for a fine of up to 300,000 euros, the government source said. Some 1 million Catalans voice their anger in a march through Barcelona.

At a news conference, regional officials displayed one of the white plastic ballot boxes bearing the crest of the regional government.

Robert said he'd much rather live in a place allows the democratic right to vote than one that doesn't.

He also hinted of further powers for the region after the attempted referendum: "We'll certainly try to look at a possible of a better deal", he told Sky.

On Saturday, a Catalan government spokesman said at least four police officers had entered the centre in Barcelona which controls the regional government's telecommunications and IT and were expected to stay there for two days. The Spanish constitution says Spain is "indivisible".

On the other hand, Carles Puigdemont promised that the referendum on the independence of Catalonia, a rich north-eastern province of 7.5 million people, would be held, although the Spanish court ruled that it was unconstitutional.



Mercedes cautious ahead of F1's farewell to Malaysia
Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton is leading after Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel crashed out of contention on the first corner in Singapore . We've been there in the past, I've seen Lewis' engine go up in smoke in Budapest in 2014.

Tillis introduces bill to address DACA recipients
The college has had a long history of working with immigrant rights groups and standing in solidarity with undocumented students. A grassroots organization called Prescott Indivisible has also risen up as an advocate for Dreamers.

Ben Stokes blasted for mocking disabled teen in second controversial video
Stokes' "disgusting" impressions come after his arrest following a brawl outside a Bristol nightclub in the early hours of Monday. Katie Price has blasted cricket star Ben Stokes after a video emerged of him "mocking" her disabled son Harvey .

Netflix Is Going To Spend $500 Million Dollars On Canadian Content
One thing Canadian media companies aren't too pleased about is the omission of a " Netflix tax" in the updated policy. No figure is available, but Joly says top-ups from Ottawa will start next year to cover the shortfall.

Former Volkswagen chief engineer arrested for dieselgate
Europe's biggest automaker admitted in September 2015 that it had used illegal software to cheat US diesel emissions tests. The company is scheduled to present third-quarter financial results late next month.

Half of world's abortions deemed unsafe by WHO
Differing laws around the world had an impact on abortion safety around the world , according to the study. Eastern Asia, including China, had a distribution similar to developed regions, Ganatra said.

Google tweaks search ads after European Union shopping antitrust ruling
The European Commission fined Google $2.8 billion this summer after determining that Google acted abusively in shopping. Google presented its plans to the commission at the end of August but did not make them public until Wednesday.

Over 122000 people flee Bali volcano on eruption alert
This is official information from the government, which has, itself, evacuated more than 80,000 residents from the immediate area. Agung, about 45 miles to the northeast of the tourist hotspot of Kuta, is among more than 120 active volcanoes in Indonesia .

United Kingdom warns Boeing it could lose defence contracts over Bombardier dispute
The firm said the decision was "divorced from the reality about the financing of multibillion-dollar aircraft programmes". Boeing has driven the USA government's investigation into the CSeries, which competes in the 100- to 150-seat sector.

Russian Federation and the USA will build a moon base
The lunar base will serve as a staging area for interplanetary missions and is a key component in getting humans to Mars. NASA said the agreement reflected the two agencies' common vision for human exploration.