Those interested in separatist movements around the world will shift their focus from Scotland immediately onto the Spanish region of Catalonia, following the announcement in the past 24 hours that the Catalan government has formally approved independence referendum plans, and set a date for November 9th.
The president of the region, Artur Mas, declared that he intends to use local laws to hold the ‘consultation’ of local people. The Spanish government has ruled the decree ‘unconstitutional’.
Catalan independence has been a strong theme in Spain for many years, with independence for the wealthy region being mooted in the form a ‘Devo Max’ type settlement soon to be enjoyed by Scotland.
But because of government refusals, the regional sentiment has grown further, with many calling for a full separation from Spain.
The BBC reports that moments after Mr Mas’s statement, Spain’s Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz said: “This referendum will not be held because it is unconstitutional”.
A series of polls stretching back to 2011 reveals an increasing likelihood of independence for the region. What started as a movement in favour of an autonomous region has turned into a full separatist campaign.
Catalonia is home to around 7.5 million people, and contains the city of Barcelona. It accounts for around 6 percent of the Spanish population.