Facts about Catalonia’s struggle for independence

Catalonia Referendum Independence Catalan leader Madrid PuigdemontCatalonia. Photo: Pixabay.com

Facts about Catalonia’s struggle for independence

As many are aware Cataloñia held a referendum on Sunday regarding leaving the federation known as Spain. Following are a few facts regarding the matter:


  • 1714: Catalonia loses its traditional self-government after siding with the losing side in the Spanish inheritance war.
  • 1932: Catalonia regain autonomousy, and Catalan becomes a official language in line with Castilian.
  • 1939: Francisco Franco’s mainly Moroccan forces conquer Barcelona towards the end of the Spanish Civil War. Catalonia’s autonomy is revoked and the use of the Catalan language is prohibited.
  • 1978: A new Spanish constitution recognizes Catalonia as one of several communities within an “indivisible” Spanish state.
  • 1979: Catalonia votes in a referendum for expanded autonomy in the areas of health care, development and culture.
  • 2006: An agreement with the Spanish Government gives Catalonia economic and legal autonomy and status as “nation”.
  • 2010: The Spanish Supreme Court ratifies the agreement from 2006, but states that the status of “nation” has no legal implications.
  • September 11, 2012: More than 1 million Catalans demonstrate in Barcelona with requirements regarding independence.
  • September 20, 2012: Spain’s Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy rejects the demands made by Cataloñia’s President Artur Mas regarding increased autonomy for Catalonia.
  • November 9, 2013: Catalonia holds a referendum on independence, even though the Spanish Supreme Court has declared this illegal. The participation was 37 percent, 80 percent of them voted in favour.
  • September 27, 2015: The separatists win the majority of seats in the regional assembly, but do not have a majority of the votes supporting them.
  • In November 2015, the regional assembly in Catalonia adopts a detachment process. The decision was quickly superseded by the Spanish Constitutional Court.
  • September 6, 2017, the regional assembly in Catalonia gives the green light to hold a referendum on October 1. The central Government in Madrid state that the decision is illegal, and are once again supported by the constitutional court.
  • September 11: Around 1 million people participate in a demonstration in Barcelona supporting Catalan independence.
  • October 1: Catalan voters attend the voting stations en masse to participate the referendum despite the fact that Spanish police implements a number of measures to prevent the referendum from being held.
  • October 1: There is widespread documentation of unprovoked police violence.
  • The regional authorities state that 90 percent of voters have said yes to an independent Catalonia. The Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont declares that the Catalans have “won the right to an independent state”. Madrid on the other hand deemes the referendum as void and a constitutional “farce”.
  • October 3: Catalan trade unions and separatists demand a general strike in protest against police brutality during the referendum.


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