Madrid, Spain – Spanish President Josep Maria Bartomeu on Monday called for a “national dialogue” in the face of a “deep political crisis” and warned of a possible break up of the country.
In a speech to the national assembly, he urged lawmakers to put aside their differences and “work towards a political solution” to the crisis, which has left the Catalan capital and the rest of Spain without a functioning central government since early June.
“We cannot be divided, we cannot be distracted, we can’t wait for the next election.
We must work towards a national dialogue that will be the first step towards a solution,” he said.
Bartomeu said there were no more excuses for a breakdown of the constitutional order, but added that the Spanish people had “a duty to ensure the stability of the constitution and the rule of law”.
The Catalan government says the Catalan region’s independence referendum on September 18 failed to secure an independent state.
The country’s Constitutional Court has declared the vote illegal.
Bars and restaurants have been closed in Barcelona since the weekend, and Spain’s anti-terrorism chief said on Monday that more than a million people have been evacuated from Catalonia’s main shopping areas.
On Sunday, Spain’s highest court ordered Catalonia’s regional government to immediately declare the referendum illegal, saying it violated the Spanish constitution.BARTOMEUS SAYS RETURN TO SAME QUESTION Spain’s President Josemaría Sanchez-Canel has rejected claims by Catalan President Carles Puigdemont that the independence referendum could be reopened after it was suspended.
“The issue has been discussed and no further decisions have been taken, he said in a television interview.”
That means there are no new questions.
There are no more negotiations,” he added.
Sanchez-Canal has said the only way to bring the referendum back is to declare independence.
A spokesman for the regional government said it was “aware” of the president’s comments.
In the meantime, Puigdelen has said his government will not negotiate with the Spanish government.”
I am convinced that if there is no agreement, there is nothing left to negotiate with, we will call the referendum,” Puigderes spokesman, Pablo Hernan-Olland, told reporters.
The Catalan leader also told Spanish broadcaster Cadena SER that the only solution to the Catalonia crisis is to have a “new, democratic, constitutional, democratic constitution, a new constitution that would guarantee the independence of Catalonia”.
Sanchez Canel said the country was “totally unprepared” for the Catalan crisis and that the Catalan government would not be prepared to leave the country for the moment.”
It is totally unprepared for the crisis of Catalan unity and Catalonia’s identity.
It is totally un-prepared,” he told the broadcaster.”
Spain is a fragile country,” he continued.”
There are still political questions, there are still problems in the budget and there are many issues.
“The regional government has said it has received 1.2 million applications for the vote.
The Spanish government is preparing to launch an appeal to Catalonia’s Constitutional Tribunal over the referendum and is appealing against the court’s ruling.
The regional president has repeatedly insisted the vote was legal and said he was ready to leave Spain if he felt the country needed to be protected.
Puigdemons administration has been criticised by the Catalan parliament, which said it will “fight with all its might” against the Catalan president’s plans to call the vote unconstitutional.