Carles Puigdemont
Carles Puigdemont

THE President of Catalonia has vowed it will hold an independence referendum this September.

Carles Puigdemont made the promise to a packed Brussels auditorium yesterday, confirming it will go ahead with or without Madrid’s consent.

It comes after the latest polls show 47% of Catalans support independence, giving Puigdemont a mandate for the referendum.

“This year, the citizens of Catalonia will have the opportunity to finally decide on their future,” he said.

“We have maintained and continue to maintain that the referendum is legally viable.

“The problem consists in a lack of political will.”

Mariano Rajoy ruled out any plans for the referendum yesterday, describing it as non-negotiable.

He added that the Catalan separatists ‘would do much better if they looked for that outstretched hand instead of continuing to embrace radicalism and being handcuffed by extremism.’

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