Spanish president rejects agreed referendum for Catalonia
Pedro Sánchez turns down Quim Torra’s request ahead of meeting with the pro-independence leader
The Spanish president Pedro Sánchez has said on Wednesday that there will be no agreed referendum on independence for Catalonia. This comes a day after his Catalan counterpart, Quim Torra, announced he will demand a vote on self-determination when he meets with Sánchez on July 9.
“The Spanish government has been very clear over the years on the subject, and this hasn’t changed,” Sánchez said on Thursday. Sánchez’s predecessor Mariano Rajoy also rejected negotiating a binding vote with previous Catalan presidents Artur Mas and Carles Puigdemont, which prompted the latter to go ahead with a referendum last October despite Spain’s opposition.
Torra had said on Wednesday that holding an agreed, binding referendum was the first thing he wants to discuss with Sánchez. If the request is turned down, without any possibility of changing his counterpart’s mind, Catalonia “will continue along the road towards the Republic,” he said.