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‘Unpleasant things’ happened on the day of the referendum, admits Spanish president

Rajoy says that ‘no human enterprise is perfect’ referring to the October 1 Spanish police violence

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28 November 2017 10:53 AM

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ACN | Barcelona

Mariano Rajoy acknowledged that during the October 1 referendum “unpleasant things” happened in Catalonia. In an interview with private Spanish TV broadcaster, Telecinco, he said that during the vote “in general, the Spanish police fulfilled their obligations as directed by the judge.” Yet he admitted that “no human enterprise is perfect” and said that the situation was “extremely complex” on October 1. “When one reaches this point and all the laws are being broken, one of the consequences is that unpleasant things happen,” he said. Rajoy also admitted that some of the images of police violence were “criticized in Europe.” 

Yet he denied the accusations of some Catalan officials who claim that the Catalan state was not implemented after the October 27 declaration of independence because Spain had threatened that there would be “casualties in the streets” in order to stop it. Rajoy accused the leaders who made such remarks, such as Esquerra Republicana’s secretary general, of “slander”.

Direct rule of Catalonia is 'very democratic,' says Rajoy

The Spanish president also said that the enforcement of Article 155 of the Spanish Constitution –resulting in the takeover of Catalonia’s self-government– is “very democratic”. This article was put into place on October 27 and includes the removal of the entire Catalan government elected in the 2015 Catalan elections. The outcome of that vote was a majority in the chamber for the pro-independence parties.

According to Rajoy, Catalonia “is back to normality and legality” with civil servants complying with the new authorities who are governing the country. He made no mention of the civil servants who are organizing and who reject the Spanish government's takeover of the Catalan administration.

Mariano Rajoy is expected to take part in the upcoming Catalan election campaign by supporting the People’s Party candidacy. During the interview, he did not rule out the fact that President Puigdemont might come back to Catalonia before December 21, the election day. 

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  • Spanish president Mariano Rajoy at the pre-campaign inaugural event in Barcelona on November 12 (by ACN)

  • Spanish president Mariano Rajoy at the pre-campaign inaugural event in Barcelona on November 12 (by ACN)

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