Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy rejected mediation proposals in the Catalan crisis and demanded that Spanish laws be respected.
Speaking Wednesday to the Spanish parliament, he noted that many unfortunate things happened, and guilty of this are “a group of activists” who organized a “fake referendum”.
Speaking about Catalonia ‘s referendum on independence, Rajoy said he remains open to dialogue, although “there is no dialogue between democratic law and disobedience.”
He stressed that the Constitution can be amended only through “law and established rules”.
Rajoy gave him a five-day term for Catalan leader Carles Pughemond to declare his position on the declaration of independence, a government source in Madrid said.
If Pughemond confirms that he declares the independence of the region, then Madrid will give him an additional deadline by Thursday, October 19, to “change the decision” and then activate Article 155 of the Constitution, which allows the Spanish government to suspend the autonomy of Catalonia.
– The answer given by Carles Pudhdemon will affect future developments. It depends on him whether he will return to the legal path, said Rajoy.
The Spanish prime minister stressed that the Catalan authorities had used their constitutional position and launched a “very dangerous attack on institutions and, much worse, on social consent”.
Earlier, in his televised address, Rajoy asked Pudememon to clarify whether he had declared independence or not, before the Government in Spain was able to apply any measure to Article 155, which stipulates a regional power in case of endangering interests the Spanish state, to strip away all the powers and to transfer to the central government in Madrid.
That member is the most extreme measure if an autonomous region declares independence, and in Spain it has never been applied. In political circles, Article 155 is also called a “nuclear option”.
Pujdemon said in his speech that he was accepting the “mandate of the people” for secession from Spain, but asked the Catalan parliament that the decision be postponed in order to give preference to the negotiations with Madrid.
On Thursday, not waiting for the five days to respond, Catalan leader Carles Pughemond, responding to the Spanish government’s ultimatum on Twitter, wrote: “We want a dialogue and the answer is to put Article 155 on the table. The message is received.”
Catalan Deputy Prime Minister Oriol Zunkeras stressed that “what the international community wants and expected of Catalonia is sincere dialogue, not confrontation and new threats.”