Spain could use law to suspend Catalan autonomy - justice min

Josep Maria Bartomeu

At least 844 people were injured as armed police brutally cracked down on the vote, branded "illegal" by the Spanish government. In the former, there was brute state force, the visiting of riot-police violence on non-rioters, including pensioners: citizens who were merely exercising their right to vote.

"No we won't. We accept and respect the laws of Spain, the constitution of Spain and the territorial unity of Spain, and in this referendum it would appear less than half of the population participated in, although admittedly it wasn't easy for people to participate, but that's a seperate issue".

However, the violent tactics of the Spanish police on Sunday appear to have done exactly that.

We couldn't believe our eyes as little Cornellà was suddenly thrust into the spotlight and excited locals starting sending videos of Puigdemont to Catalan television TV3. But the result was not decisive: turnout was low, at around 42%. "Markets have not cared much so far, but that is about to change", says Jan von Gerich at Nordea Markets. Support for the movement garnered momentum following the 2007 financial crisis that tested the Spanish economy and heralded an era of austerity, intensifying regional bitterness that it was propping up the rest of the economy.

The Socialists' feeble response to the Catalan issue is not unlike the Labour Party's response in the UK to the challenge of Brexit. "Ultimately, setbacks should prove better opportunities to add to [Spanish government bond] overweights, but we would wait until the situation clears and signs that a full-blown escalation will be avoided". He visits Catalonia regularly and is a member of an EU-supported research group studying 'new speakers' of minority languages such as Irish and Catalan.

Data showing factories across the euro zone enjoyed their most productive month since early 2011 in September could provide no support to the single currency, which slipped 0.7 percent to $1.1730, close to its lowest in six weeks. The Catalan government said 73 percent of polling stations had opened.

Le Monde observed that Spain and the Catalan region were "diving into the unknown".

Meanwhile, the yield on the benchmark 10-year Spanish Treasury note was near its highest level of the session, trading up by nine basis points to 1.70%. For all the public criticism of what is clearly seen as an unnecessarily heavy-handed Spanish clampdown, few European leaders have been willing to criticize Rajoy in public.

"FC Barcelona joins the country wide strike called for by Table for Democracy and therefore the Club will be closed tomorrow", the club said.

Despite this attack on the democratic process, Catalans have voted for their independence.

"It's the biggest day of gratuitous violence that we've experienced in the past 40 years", Puigdemont said, referring to the four decades of democratic rule in Spain.

The pain of any Barca departure from the league would be mutual, of course. In 1932, the Spanish Parliament approved the Catalan Statute of Autonomy, though was swiftly repealed under the dictatorship of General Francisco Franco, amid brutal repression in the region.

In doing all it can to block a vote on Catalan independence, yet failing to develop a viable alternative to the status quo, the Spanish government runs the risk of making more likely the very outcome it is seeking at all costs to prevent.

Trips to Catalonia are also popular with users of services provided by Jalpak Co., affiliated with airline giant Japan Airlines Co.

"But if the board really thinks I'm a problem, I will take a step back and leave the national team before 2018".

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