Spain Warns Catalonia With Threat of Direct Control From Madrid

Europe:Madrid stock market jumps at open

On the same day that Catalonia's president called for negotiations with Spain to secure independence for his state, the White House signaled it favored talks between Catalonia and the Madrid government and "them moving forward".

"Catalonian President Puigdemont said that the October 1 referendum gave the Catalan government a mandate to pursue independence, but not immediately".

In a press conference after a party meeting, Sanchez explained that "we share Rajoy's (Spanish Prime Minister) decision so that Puigdemont (president of Catalonia) clarifies what he said yesterday".

In a much anticipated address to the Catalan Parliament on Tuesday night, President Puigdemont said: "We call on worldwide states and organisations to recognise the Catalan republic as an independent and sovereign state".

"I propose suspending the effects of the declaration of independence to undertake talks in the coming weeks without which it is not possible to reach an agreed solution".

Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has vowed to do everything in his power to prevent the region's Independence in a dispute that has hurled Spain into its deepest political crisis in decades.

At stake is the future of a region of 7.5 million people, one of Spain's economic powerhouses, whose drive to break away has raised concern for stability in the European Union.




Wednesday, a government source who refused to be named said "all options" were on the table as the crisis talks were under way.

Spain and Catalonia now enter into the unknown, as Madrid has repeatedly said independence is not up for discussion.

Catalonia's head Carles Puigdemont earlier announced that based on the results of the October 1 referendum on secession from Spain, the region has earned the right to become an independent republic.

The poll was marred by violence after Spanish police acting on court orders attempted to stop the vote by raiding polling stations, seizing ballot boxes, beating voters and firing rubber bullets at crowds.

According to the Catalan government, as many as 90.18% of voters supported the idea of Catalonia's independence.

In Brussels, there was a sense of relief that the euro zone's fourth-largest economy now had at least bought some time to deal with a crisis that was still far from over.

The Spanish PM said he wanted "remove the general confusion" as he urged the Catalan government to say whether it had declared independence or not.

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