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The Catalan government will declare independence immediately if the “yes” vote wins the referendum to be held on October 1, Catalan pro-independence parties announced on July 4.
Governing pro-independence coalition Junts pel Sí (Together for Yes) and the radical left CUP (Popular Unity Candidacy) discussed the referendum law that will be officially presented by the government later in the day, and which has yet to be passed by the Catalan Parliament.
If the “yes” vote wins, a constituent process will start in the two days following the election, resulting in a new Catalan constitution. If the “no” has more votes, the Catalan government will call a snap election. There is no threshold for voter participation for the vote to be deemed valid.
A new electoral body will be created per law in order to monitor the referendum process and eventually declare the winner. It will be made up of five people, either lawyers or political scientists.
All citizens older than 18 years will be eligible to vote, including those living abroad. The referendum law will enable the Catalan government to create the census, which will be approved by the new electoral body.
Spain’s governing People’s Party (PP) leader in Catalonia, Xavier García-Albiol, called the meeting between Together for Yes and CUP a “coup d’etat”, and said pro-independence parties have “blown up democracy, liberty, and coexistence.” The Spanish Defense Minister, María Dolores de Cospedal, emphasized that the army is committed to defending Spain’s national sovereignty and its territorial unity.
Pedro Sánchez, the leader of the Socialist Party (PSOE), Spain’s main opposition party, said the October 1 vote cannot be considered a referendum, and promised to support Spanish President Mariano Rajoy if an alternative is presented. “As the president of the government, Rajoy should take steps to provide a solution to the political situation in Catalonia”, he said.