Catalonia’s regional parliament has passed legislation authorizing a referendum on the region’s independence from the rest of Spain.
Catalonia’s parliament made the announcement on Friday, allowing Catalan leaders to hold a non-binding vote on November 9.
The law was approved with 106 to 28 votes.
Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy is against Catalonia’s campaign for an independence referendum, because Spain’s constitution prohibits referendums that do not include all Spaniards.
The decision came on the heels of Scottish people voting to stay with the UK in a similar vote.
Catalan President Artur Mas supported Scottish independence and said that Catalans now want the same chance as the Scots.
“What happened in Scotland and the United Kingdom is not a setback for us, because what we really want in Catalonia is to have the chance to vote, the same possibility,” Mas said.
Unlike the Scottish vote, the referendum in Catalonia would not result in secession. It would ask Catalans whether they favor secession. If the answer is Yes, Mas will be given a political mandate to negotiate a path toward independence.
The prospect of an independent Scotland would have served as a paradigm for how to establish and develop a new nation, appealing to European separatists in addition to Catalans who intend to carve out their own Mediterranean nation.
Major separatist groups in Europe include pro-independence Basques in northern Spain; Corsicans who want to break away from France; Italians from several northern regions; and Flemish speakers in Belgium demanding more autonomy, independence or union with the Netherlands.