Destinations Magazine

Catalonia’s Future: Voting in Their Hearts

By Stizzard
Catalonia’s future: Voting in their hearts

MANUEL MOLINS remembers being called a “Catalan dog” after Spain’s civil war in the 1930s. But the 93-year-old had his revenge on November 9th, when he voted for the region’s independence in Lleida, one of Catalonia’s four provincial capitals. “Catalonia is important for Spain, but they treat us badly. If they didn’t, I might think differently,” he said. Mr Molins’ vote brought no consequences. He was one of 1.9m Catalans (out of 6.3m who were eligible) to vote for independence at a mock referendum called by the region’s president, Artur Mas. The turnout of 37% was hailed as a triumph by Mr Mas and a resounding failure by his opponents.The vote ends the game of legal cat-and-mouse between Madrid and Barcelona in which the constitutional court has twice banned Mr Mas’s attempts to hold an official, if non-binding, vote. The polls show widespread support in Catalonia for a referendum on independence similar to the one that was held in Scotland on September 18th, even among many who are against secession. But Spain’s prime minister, Mariano Rajoy, refuses to allow one.Mr Mas relied on separatist volunteers to man the polling booths, though opponents still want to…


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