Catalonia lawmakers vote to begin separation from Spain
Catalonia lawmakers vote to begin separation from Spain

[JURIST] The Parliament of Catalan [official website, in Catalan] on Monday approved [press release, in Catalan] a proposed resolution to begin separation from Spain. The measure passed with 72 votes in favor of the resolution and 63 against and established that the Parliament would have a “constituent process, citizen participation” and would “adopt the measures necessary to make effective” the provisions. The resolution also stated that the Parliament would take the “necessary steps” to effect the separation from Spain in a peaceful and democratic manner and in a way that would empower citizens. The Parliament hopes that the separation will be complete within 18 months. Catalan nationalist parties won a majority of the seats [BBC report] in the September election. While the resolution states that the separation of Catalan from Spain is not subject to the decisions of the Constitutional Court [official website], it is likely that the court will decide that the resolution is unconstitutional.

The Catalonia independence movement has gathered momentum in recent years following the economic crisis in the country that began in 2008. In September the High Court of Justice of Catalonia summoned [JURIST report] Catalonia President Artur Mas over his involvement in the 2014 independence referendum [JURIST report]. Last year Mas signed a decree [JURIST report] calling for a referendum on secession and independence from Spain, inciting confrontation from Spain’s central government in Madrid. In February 2014 Spain’s parliament rejected [JURIST report] Catalonia’s proposed referendum, which asked voters if they wanted Catalonia to become a state, and, in the case of an affirmative response, if they wanted this state to be independent.