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Catalonia independence vote ruled unconstitutional

Published on Mar 26, 2014 6:09 AM
Supporters of independence for Catalonia demonstrating in Barcelona in September 2012. -- FILE PHOTO: AFP 

MADRID (AFP) - Spanish judges ruled on Tuesday, March 25, 2014, that a planned independence referendum in Catalonia was illegal, dealing a blow to the indebted region's drive for self-rule.

The north-eastern region vowed to push on with the vote, however, defying fierce resistance from the national government, which has called for unity as Spain crawls out of its economic crisis.

Under Spain's Constitution a region "cannot unilaterally call a referendum on self-determination to decide on its integration in Spain", according to a written summary of the ruling released by the Constitutional Court.

It ruled "unconstitutional and null" a declaration by the Catalan regional Parliament which claimed Catalonia had a sovereign right to hold a vote on its future.

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