MADRID (Sputnik) — On November 9, the Parliament of Catalonia passed a resolution to begin the process of seceding from Spain. The initiative was backed by 72 out of 135 votes in the parliament. The Spanish Constitutional Court suspended for at least five months the resolution by accepting for consideration a suit appealing to its illegitimacy filed by the country's government.
"The party and the government guarantee the unity of Spain, equality of Spaniards and implementation of the law. The government will take all the necessary measures for preservation of these values," Mariano Rajoy said at the presentation of the ruling party's candidate list for the parliamentary election as broadcast by EFE channel.
Rajoy, however, noted that he did not want to go beyond the appeal to the Constitutional Court.
According to him, the Catalan issue remains one of the most important points of the ruling People's Party programme on the eve of December's parliamentary elections.
The secessionist motion in the Catalan parliament was facilitated by the victory of the pro-independence Catalan Junts pel Si (Together for Yes) coalition and their allies from the radical left-wing Popular Unity Candidacy (CUP) in the regional election in September. The broad-coalition secured 72 seats in the 135-member regional parliament.
Catalonia has long sought independence from Spain, but the Spanish government has repeatedly and forcefully declined Catalonia’s right to independence.