The prospect of Catalan independence has stirred a lot of debate in European politics over the past few years. On Sunday, the global population witnessed what the end result of that debate was. After Catalan President Carles Puigdemont pushed through with the referendum, Madrid responded by ordering the police to stop it from happening. That day, horrifying images emerged of police officers shooting the secessionist voters with rubber bullets and breaking into the polling stations to prevent Catalans from voting.
Both the Spanish government and the European Commission affirmed that the Catalan independence referendum was unconstitutional. While Madrid has the right to use force in this situation, the police officers should not have used as much force as they did to shut down the referendum. The final blow in the argument seems to be precisely the violent reaction from the Spanish police.
On Oct. 9, the Catalan government might act on the referendum results and declare independence from Spain. Judging by Madrid’s reaction to the referendum, we at The Ticker fear that this may result in even more violence in Catalonia, if not a full-blown civil war.