CATALONIA will move on Monday to declare independence from Spain, a regional government source said, as the European Union nation nears a rupture that threatens the foundations of its young democracy and has unnerved financial markets. A Constitutional Court ruling is now in effect, forbidding any referendum from taking place.
Catalonia's president has called for further mediation to tackle the region's secession crisis and accused King Felipe VI of acting as a mouthpiece for the Spanish government and of "deliberately ignoring millions of Catalans".
But the opposition socialist bloc in the regional parliament had called for Monday's session to be blocked. The brutal police crackdown ordered by the Spanish government on the people who participated in the vote to break away had elicited wide condemnation. The results reflected that 90% of the voters support independence from Spain; but, the turnout was only around 43% of the Catalans in the region.
Lawyers representing the regional parliament had also warned that the session would technically be illegal because it planned to discuss the results of a referendum that had been previously suspended by the Constitutional Court.
The Chairman of the government of Catalonia declared the necessity of a new agreement with Madrid about the status of the region, however, the Spanish government headed by Mariano Rajoy stated that a possible deprivation of the status of Catalonia autonomy. He is expected to appear in front of the Catalan parliament to make the independence declaration on Monday where the pro-Independence members hold a slim majority.
In a rare address to the nation on Tuesday, the Spanish monarch, King Felipe said Sunday's vote was illegal and unconstitutional.
The suspension order has inflamed one of the biggest political crises to hit Spain in decades. Spain disputes the result, saying that many people voted a couple of times due to the lack of proper guarantees.
On Wednesday, Puigdemont had called for global mediation to begin the process; however, he also remarked that the referendum's results should be acknowledged.
Twenty-four hours later, Mr Puigdemont claimed the king had rejected the moderating role granted to him by the Spanish constitution.
Barcelona defender and Spanish national team player Gerard Pigue had come under attack after he voted in the referendum.
Thousands of extra officers from the National Police and Civil Guard were deployed to Catalonia amid tensions over the independence referendum.
Voters in Catalonia, a region with its own distinct language and culture, approved an independence referendum on Sunday.
The move is largely symbolic, given that the headquarters would still remain in the Catalan regional capital, Barcelona, but is aimed at remaining under the protective umbrella of the European Central Bank, sources said.