MORE than 350,000 pro-unity Catalans marched in Barcelona on Sunday ahead of Carles Puigdemont’s parliamentary address tomorrow.
Crowds waving Spanish flags brought the city centre to a standstill, with banners reading ‘Together we are better’ and ‘Enough! Let’s Recover Good Sense’.
People chanted for Catalan leader Puigdemont to be arrested following last Sunday’s referendum.
Meanwhile, Puigdemont is under growing pressure to delay declaring unilateral independence.
Around 90% of the 2.4 million Catalans who cast their ballot voted for independence.
However, a member of Catalunya’s ruling coalition told the BBC ‘it wouldn’t happen now’.
It is rumoured that Puigdemont may instead use his speech to map out a path to independence.
It comes after two of Catalunya’s largest banks, Sabadell and CaixaBank, announced they were moving their headquarters from the region.
Energy supplier Gas Natural has also shifted its legal base to Madrid.
Spain’s Interior Ministry has said thousands of extra Guardia Civil and National Police deployed to Catalunya would stay until October 18.
Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy hinted to El Pais he would be ready to take control of Catalunya’s government.
“I am not ruling out anything that the law says,” he said.
“The ideal situation would be to not have to take drastic solutions, but for that to happen there would have to be rectifications.”
To do so, Rajoy would have to invoke Article 155 of Spain’s constitution, which would allow Madrid to take over the running of an autonomous region.
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