Spanish PM warns Catalan parties against independence

Madrid, Sep 22 (IANS) Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy on Tuesday warned the leader of the Catalan Regional Assembly Artur Mas that any moves towards instigating the independence of the region would be an “illegal operation”.

Mas said that if the Junts Pel Si (Together for Yes) coalition win a majority in Sunday’s elections for the Catalan Regional Assembly, they would take that as a mandate to immediately start taking the steps needed to separate from Spain, Xinhua news agency reported.

In an interview with Onda Cero radio, Rajoy said a declaration of independence would be an “illegal operation” and would only bring “instability, tension and further problems”.

Latest opinion polls show Junts Pel Si could obtain a majority or enough votes to govern.

Rajoy said Catalan parties against independence should try to reach agreement to form a government.

“If possible, we should try to build an alternative against those who want to liquidate Spain. It would be simple and reasonable,” he said.

The Catalan independence movement supports the independence of Catalonia or the Catalan countries from Spain and France.

A referendum was called for November 9, 2014 but it was suspended.

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