Catalonia referendum: Thousands descend on Barcelona AGAINST independence vote

Pep Guardiola

The Catalan government said police have settled into its communications hub and will remain there for the next two days after it was ordered by Catalonia's High Court to police to stop electronic voting.

The Spanish court has also ordered public officials not to cooperate with the ballot, and has vowed to close any polling station, as well as seize ballot papers, in order to disrupt what has been decreed an illegal referendum called by the Catalan parliament in breach of procedures.

"Regardless of turnout or the result this weekend, the Catalan referendum is becoming yet another PR disaster for the political establishment in Spain", Stephen Gallo, European head of FX strategy at BMO Financial Group, said in a note Wednesday.

The national government has already ordered schools in and around Barcelona to be locked on Sunday so they can not be used as polling stations.

Catalonia's defiant regional government is pressing ahead anyway, urging the region's 5.3 million voters to make their voices heard. Catalan officials said they planned to hold the referendum anyway.

Police have sealed over half of Catalan schools, designated as polling stations, for the now-banned independence referendum.

Bastarreche said: "Most countries have written constitutions, and the Spanish one is a product of our 500-year history, and one of its central principles is the indivisibility of the kingdom".

Parti Québécois Leader Jean-François Lisée compared Spain's effort to clamp down on the vote to Quebec's October crisis and said the provincial government must ask the Spanish people to respect democracy and allow the Catalan people to vote. Thousands of extra police have been deployed to the northeastern region with orders to evacuate and shut down potential voting stations by 6 a.m. on Sunday.

Catalan referendum vote police
Riot police clashed with voters on Sunday. Getty Images

Another option would be the creation of a Catalan football league but, since this would be a new competition in the eyes of UEFA, they would require a brand new coefficient - affecting qualification for the Champions League and other UEFA competitions.

"We must organize it so that there are long queues to give the image to the world that we are going to vote", instructions sent to voters read.

Catalonia in the northwest of Spain is home to 7.5million residents and the country's second city, Barcelona.

On Saturday, Guardia Civil officers raided the Catalan government's telecommunications and information technology center, Joan Maria Piqué, the worldwide communications director for the government of Catalonia, told CNN.

Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont told Reuters in an interview, however: "Everything is prepared at the more than 2,000 voting points so they have ballot boxes and voting slips, and have everything people need to express their opinion".

On Friday, Catalan farmers rode tractors through the streets of Barcelona, driving slowly and waving pro-independence flags and banners.

The Spanish government has promised to halt the referendum.

Dozens of similar protests calling for the nation's unity popped up in other Spanish cities in the first large grassroots response to the Catalan independence bid.



Latest news

England can win Ashes without Stokes, says Ali
Moeen Ali believes England can still enjoy a successful Ashes tour of Australia even if influential all-rounder Ben Stokes is not available.

Cuban loans Mavs' team plane to JJ Barea for Puerto Rico relief
Barea is the only active National Basketball Association player that is a native Puerto Rican, and the recovery effort is dear to him.

Best Buy Releases Nintendo Super NES Classic
But in July and August, a string of pre-order debacles got retro video game fans worrying that Nintendo's promises meant nothing. First off, Star Fox 2 has a website with a few pages instead, but all other manuals are reproduced nicely as digital PDFs.

Heat is on Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel at Malaysian GP
Verstappen took third for Red Bull on his 20th birthday, with his team-mate Daniel Ricciardo in fourth. Victor of the 2017 Singapore Grand Prix last time out, Hamilton said: "It's been a very hard day.

Green Bay Packers fume over hit that hospitalized Davante Adams
He said he planned to reach out to Adams and send him a message. "I'll be ready for whatever they throw my way". I could've been a little better, but you've got to understand, I was using momentum trying to make a play.

Mysterious Cuba 'attacks' cause USA to cut embassy staff, issue travel advisory
Both the U.S. and Cuban governments "have not yet identified the guilty party", the state department official said . Last week, USA diplomats held another high-level meeting with Cuba amid concerns about the incidents.

US ambassador: Israel Occupies 'Just Two Percent' of West Bank
It must stop building settlements on the occupied lands without any further loss of time. Construction of new housing in the settlement of Maale Adumim on September 25, 2017.

Woman injured as India, Pakistan trade fire on LoC
The reports said that some villagers of the area had noticed the presence of four suspects when they were working in the fields. The defence sources said that the attackers could be from Pakistan's BAT which comprises of soldiers as well as militants.

Brooke Simpson Latest News, Photos, and Videos
Craft was initially and unsurprisingly set on Team Shelton, but a concerted and appreciative swarm from Cyrus eventually won her over.

Nearly Half Of Abortions Worldwide Are Unsafe, Study Says
SPUC researcher Fiorella Nash has written before about how it is misleading to talk about "safe" and "unsafe" abortion. Most abortions that take place in Western and Northern Europe and North America are safe.

Little girl takes Prince Harry's popcorn at Invictus Games
Thankfully, Prince Harry decided against throwing her in the Tower of London and instead pulled faces at the youngster. But we can't stop swooning over her casual yet chic fashion choices. "They live apart so much as it is".

Detroit Lions Week Three Report Card
The Colts may not have to rush Luck with the way backup Jacoby Brissett played in their 31-28 win over the Cleveland Browns . Quinn said the Falcons staff will "see where they are at" in terms of what their level of participation will be this week.

Contractors Begin Building Prototypes For Trump's Border Wall
However, CBP confirmed that four of the prototypes will be made from concrete , while the others will use alternative materials. A green tarpaulin hanging on a chain-link fence blocked most of the views of construction, which is expected to last 30 days.

Google forced to make changes in the search engine
If you're not familiar with Google Shopping, it's that graphical bar that shows up any time you search for a product. The reason is that they have been auctioned off, with Google as just one among the bidders.

Moore gets Trump's support after beating odd in Alabama
Ray Campbell before a Democratic Senate candidate forum at the Princess Theatre on August 3, 2017 in Decatur, Alabama. The Alabama Republican Senate race runoff happened on Tuesday, and "Big" Luther Strange was defeated by Roy Moore .

Other news