Dismissed Catalan president Carles Puigdemont greets supporters as he leaves a restaurant in Girona on Saturday.
Dismissed Catalan president Carles Puigdemont greets supporters as he leaves a restaurant in Girona on Saturday. Robin Townsend

Catalans urged to peacefully defy Madrid

SACKED Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont has called on Catalans to peacefully oppose Spain's formal takeover of the region's affairs.

In a televised address on Saturday, the separatist leader said Madrid's decision to suspend the autonomy of the province and appoint the Spanish Deputy Prime Minister as its provisionary head went against the will of the people.

Catalonia is now theoretically under the direct control of the Spanish national government in Madrid after the regional parliament's vote in favour of an independent republic on Friday.

Mr Puigdemont said: "My message to you is to have patience, perseverance and perspective. And for that we are certain that the best way to defend the achievements up to today is by democratically opposing the application of Article 155, which is the conclusion of a premeditated aggression against the will of the Catalan people, who in large majority and throughout many years, have felt like a European nation.

"We must do this, avoiding repression and threats. We don't have and we don't want to have reasons to use force. Not us.”

The Spanish Government has since said it will welcome Mr Puigdemont's participation in regional elections in December.

Early on Saturday, Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy made direct control from Madrid "official” by publishing a document dismissing Mr Puigdemont, his deputy Oriol Junqueras and all regional government members.

Although Mr Puigdemont and the 12 members of the Catalan Cabinet will now no longer be paid and could be charged with usurping others' functions if they refuse to obey Madrid, there was no immediate sign that they were willing to comply.

May Bulman, The Independent



Rocky business expands services following a growth period

Rocky business expands services following a growth period

Expansion indicates confidence in the future of CQ's economy

GRAZIER'S DELIGHT: Rain falls across Central Queensland

GRAZIER'S DELIGHT: Rain falls across Central Queensland

Emerald saw the most rain with almost 100mm recorded in 24 hours.

LET IT FALL: Rain to stick around CQ until next week

LET IT FALL: Rain to stick around CQ until next week

Almost 40mm has been recorded at the Rocky Airport since Wednesday

Local Partners