Catalan President Artur Mas says a vote on the region’s independence from Spain will be “impossible” to stop even if Madrid is against the referendum.
“If the Catalan population wants to vote on its future, it’s practically impossible to stop that forever,” Mas said in an interview on Wednesday.
He said the Spanish government should realize that it cannot stand against the people’s will.
The Spanish government says it fiercely opposes any independence vote for Catalonia and considers it as illegal.
“I think it’s absurd to pretend that could be so and I think the Spanish government will have to realize that,” Mas said.
Earlier in the day, people in the Spanish Basque city of Bilbao held a demonstration in support of Catalonia’s independence.
The protest was held ahead of Catalonia’s National Day on September 11.
Polls suggest the majority of 7.5 million people living in the northeastern region back plans for referendum scheduled for November 9.
Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has insisted that he will under no circumstances allow the independence vote to take place.
In April, the Spanish parliament rejected a proposal by Catalonia to hold a referendum on independence.
In recent years, a series of demonstrations have been held to support the self-determination right for Catalonia, as well as to end the redistribution of the region’s taxes to other areas of the country.
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