Theresa May tells Spain UK will not recognise Catalonian independence and thinks the referendum was illegal

Theresa May has told Spain that the UK will not recognise Catalonian independence.


The UK government has said it believes the referendum which was held on 1 October was illegal, Number 10 has revealed.
Earlier today Mrs May spoke to her Spanish counterpart, Mariano Rajoy, about the ongoing situation in Catalonia.

Mrs May reiterated that the UK is clear that the referendum had no legal basis and that any unilateral declaration of independence would be inconsistent with the rule of law.

The prime ministers also discussed progress in the Brexit negotiations and looked ahead to meeting at this week’s European Council.

Earlier today a Spanish constitutional court declared the Catalan independence referendum “void”, a spokesperson confirmed.

A judge said the referendum law passed on September 6th, which led to the contentious vote, was not valid.

The court had originally suspended the referendum law as it studied its legality, though the Catalan government went ahead with the ballot regardless.

The referendum, held on October 1, returned an overwhelming result in favour of Catalonia breaking away from Spain.

Nine days later, Catalan president Carles Puigdemont declared his country had won the right to independence but delayed an official declaration for further talks.

In an historic statement, he said Catalonia had “gained the right to be an independent state.”

But he said an official announcement would be postponed for several weeks to allow negotiations.

“At this historic moment… I call for the right for Catalonia to independent and form a republic,” he said.

He added: “We propose to suspend the declaration for some weeks for negotiations. We want to de escalate the tension in order to work to put into practice the result of the referendum.”