The Atlantic

What More Does Catalonia Want?

Between the region’s current status, and full independence, there’s little space for compromise.
Source: Albert Gea / Reuters

Catalonia has its own language, its own identity, and a culture distinct from that of the rest of Spain. Under Spanish law, it also has its own president, its own parliament, and its own police force. The October 1 referendum in which Catalans voted overwhelmingly for independence from Spain (turnout was 43 percent amid a massive, sometimes violent crackdown by Spanish authorities) was intended to turn this de facto separateness into something more formal. As Madrid watched in dismay, threatening Catalan leaders with, Carles Puigdemont, the Catalan president, signed Tuesday a declaration of independence for Catalonia, but said its implementation would be delayed so “that in the coming weeks we can undertake a dialogue” with the government in Madrid.

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