Catalan lawmakers voted on Friday to declare independence from Spain but Madrid moved swiftly to quash the breakaway bid in a sharp escalation of a crisis causing jitters in secession-wary Europe.
Spain's public prosecutor's office will file rebellion charges next week against Catalan secessionist leader Carles Puigdemont, a spokesman said Friday after Catalonia's regional parliament voted to declare independence.
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Fresh from a parliamentary session on Friday that declared independence from Spain, Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont urged supporters to "maintain the momentum" in a peaceful manner, as Madrid was poised to impose direct rule on the region.
Spain's Senate has voted to approve measures that will allow the government to intervene in Catalan autonomy and remove its devolved executive after the region made a unilateral declaration of independence.
Catalonia's parliament passed a motion to declare independence from Spain after a tense debate that resulted in some opposition politicians leaving the chamber in protest.
The Madrid stock market sank on Friday, bucking an upwards trend in Europe as Spanish lawmakers were set to vote on the imposition of direct rule on independence-seeking Catalonia.
‘We establish the Catalan republic as an independent state’: Catalan separatists file resolution ahead of independence declaration
Catalonia's secessionist parties have filed the parliamentary resolution which, if passed in the devolved parliament's chamber, will mean a declaration of independence.
‘The situation is exceptional and the consequences very serious’: Rajoy asks Senate to remove Catalan government
PM Rajoy called the region's secessionist push "a continuous process of anti-democratic decisions"
Catalonia's moderate business minister resigned on Thursday after the Spanish region's separatist president Carles Puigdemont ruled out elections and left the door open to a declaration of independence by the regional parliament.
After watching Barcelona cope ably with the distraction of political tension sweeping across Spain in recent weeks, it is Real Madrid's turn to head into the eye of the storm on Sunday when they travel to Girona.
Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria insisted the government was "fulfilling a legal obligation, a democratic obligation and a political obligation," by its actions.