Skip to Content

Map of 'Northern Catalonia'; Perpignan Castle

‘French Catalonia’ want to join Catalan state

The struggle for Catalan independence from Spain has spilled over the border, as "Northern Catalans" marched to demand independence from France.

Published: November 6, 2017, 12:43 pm

    Read more

    As Catalonia’s ex-president Carles Puigdemont and four former cabinet members have been released pending a court ruling, a French region across the border have demanded a united Catalan state. Madrid had issued a European Arrest Warrant against Puigdemont.

    Some 2 000 protesters took to the streets on Sunday in the town of Perpignan, southwestern France, to demand their own independence referendum.

    Activists at the peaceful march said they were marching for a “united Catalan state” that would break apart Spain and France – amid fears of an independence fever in Flanders too gripping the EU.

    Demonstrators waved esteladas – Catalan independence flags – during the massive rally in Perpignan, with the motto “We are Northern Catalonia, we want to decide”.

    The demonstration in the Pyrénées region of France, marked the anniversary of a 1659 Treaty, when Catalonia was taken over by French and Spanish rulers.

    One protester told The Express: “I am for democracy, for freedom and for defending the freedom of Catalonia North and South. We are here to support political prisoners.”

    Another said: “We are behind the protesters in Catalonia and I am very proud of the mobilization here in Perpignan.”

    The local town hall has refused the Catalan esteladas, because councillors say they feared “extreme politicitization”.

    The marchers also demanded the release of the Catalan “political prisoners” – members of the deposed Barcelona government who have been imprisoned by Spain.

    Nine Catalonian politicians have meanwhile been arrested and jailed, and members of the Catalonian leadership face up to 30 years in prison for their attempt to breakaway from Spain.

    On Saturday too, thousands of Basque people showed solidarity with Catalan independence.

    The Catalan region’s declaration of independence in late October sent shock waves across the country and the continent.

    “The Catalan conflict could help legitimate pro-Russian secession in Crimea and Donbass,” Spanish journalist Enric Juliana claimed in the Barcelona-based newspaper La Vanguardia on Wednesday.

    Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, while calling it “internal matter of Spain,” also made some ironic remarks on her Facebook page.

    “Is this the Europe that wants to talk to us about the Crimea referendum and upholding rights?” she asked in a post on her social media account.

    Days after Catalonia held their independence referendum on October 1, Russian President Vladimir Putin told an audience in the Russian town of Sochi that the region’s breakaway bid amounted to a domestic issue.

    “Russia’s position is known here,” Putin said. “All that is happening is Spain’s internal business and must be resolved according to Spanish law and on the basis of democratic traditions.”

    Keep ​your language polite​. Readers from many different countries visit and contribute to Free West Media and we must therefore obey the rules in​,​ for example​, ​Germany. Illegal content will be deleted.

    If you have been approved to post comments without preview from FWM, you are responsible for violation​s​ of​ any​ law. This means that FWM may be forced to cooperate with authorities in a possible crime investigation.

    If your comments are subject to preview ​by FWM, please be patient. We continually review comments but depending on the time of day it can take up to several hours before your comment is reviewed.

    We reserve the right to del​ete​ comments that are offensive, contain slander or foul language, or are irrelevant to the discussion.

    Europe

    Migrants refuse to clean their own toilets in Dutch shelter

    AlkmaarEight very angry, unwashed migrants in jogging pants gathered in the shared kitchen of the asylum seekers' center in Alkmaar, the Netherlands to complain about having to clean toilets, a Dutch daily reported.

    NATO preparing a ‘military Schengen’

    The US has significantly boosted its forces in Europe, while preparing a "military Schengen" to allow easy movement across borders.

    ‘Refugees’ are not paying German pensions but contributing to poverty

    Germans were promised that an influx of migrants would solve the country's imploding demography. But instead pensioners are bearing the brunt of the wave of newcomers, not benefitting from it.

    Five nights of violence in Toulouse after arrest of niqab-wearer

    ToulouseA police patrol in the southern city of Toulouse, France arrested a woman wearing a niqab last weekend because she refused to show her face. The arrest, which took place in the city’s migrant populated Mirail suburb, sparked five consecutive nights of violence.

    Mayor of Naples refuses docking of US nuclear submarine

    NaplesA nuclear submarine that took part in a series of missile strikes conducted by US, French and UK warships and warplanes against Syria in contravention of the UN Charter, is not welcome near the waters of one of Italy's largest seaports, according to the popular mayor of Naples.

    American survey exposes growing grim mood in Ukraine

    An American Republican survey has exposed the mood in Ukraine: It is currently bad and respondents are expecting worse.

    Italy and Germany threaten to end ‘absurd’ Russia sanctions

    The leader of Lega Nord Matteo Salvini will put an end to “absurd” EU sanctions against Russia if he becomes prime minister of the country he said.

    Pressure increases on Britain to explain strange ‘Novichok’ claims

    Britain needs to show proof that Russia was behind the poisoning of a former Russian double agent and his daughter in England, the German government’s coordinator for Russia told German broadcaster ARD on Thursday.

    Migrant identity fraud: From a child to a woman to a man

    An African asylum seeker in France has been sentenced to four months in prison for identity fraud after he claimed that he was underage, then an adult and then switching his gender from female to male.

    Worse than the Cuban crisis, but the West’s population is kept in the dark

    An informative Swedish weekly has revealed the high drama - worse than the Cuban crisis - that enveloped the world in March while the West's population was being kept ignorant.

    Go to archive