French European affairs minister urges both sides to negotiate their way out of crisis triggered by last weeks referendum
France has said it will not recognise Catalonia if the regional government presses ahead with a unilateral declaration of independence from Spain, and urged both sides to negotiate their way out of the crisis triggered by last weeks referendum.
If there were to be a declaration of independence, it would be unilateral, and it would not be recognised, Frances European affairs minister, Nathalie Loiseau, said.
Catalonia cannot be defined by the vote organised by the independence movement just over a week ago, she told CNews television. This crisis needs to be resolved through dialogue at all levels of Spanish politics.
Loiseau also repeated the European commissions warning that an independent Catalonia would find itself outside the European Union and obliged to reapply for membership.
If independence were to be recognised which is not something thats being discussed the most immediate consequence would be that [Catalonia] automatically left the European Union.
The Catalan president, Carles Puigdemont, is due to bring the results of the referendum before the regional parliament on Tuesday.
It remains unclear whether Puigdemont will opt merely to recognise the referendum result or whether he will push ahead with a unilateral declaration of independence.
Speaking to Catalonias TV3 on Sunday night, he lamented the Spanish governments unwillingness to negotiate over the issue, adding: If the [Spanish] state doesnt respond positively, well do what we came to do.
On Monday morning, Spains deputy prime minister, Soraya Senz de Santamara, said the government would act if Puigdemont declared independence on Tuesday. It wont go unanswered, she said, but did not specify whether the government would move to take control of Catalonia by invoking article 155 of the Spanish constitution, which has never been used.
Applying 155 would involve a lot of things because its not been studied very much, she told Cope radio.