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Catalonia or Spain?

Catalonia (or Catalunya) is a region and nationality in the north-east of Spain. It occupies an area of 12,399 sq miles, and it borders France and Andorra to the north, the Mediterranean Sea to the east, and the Spanish regions of Aragon and Valencian community to the west and south. It has a population of about 8 million people, and the capital is Barcelona. It has its own culture and its own language, Catalan, which is a mix of Spanish and French.

Lately, Catalonia’s desire to become independent from Spain has increased. Every year, more and more people want to secede from this country to form their own. This is due to many causes, both cultural and political, as well as economical.

Three hundred years ago, in 1714, Catalonia was independent. Lots of people still hold on to this ancestral patriotism, and that’s why a big part of the population don’t feel Spanish.

Also, the political situation in Madrid doesn’t help. Rajoy, actual president of Spain, and the rest of the PP party (who govern nowadays) have criticized catalans behaviour and have forbidden a referendum called by Artur Mas, Catalonia’s president, which was set to know people’s opinion.

The economical situation is just as bad, or worse than the political one. Spain has recently suffered a large economic crisis, and the deficit is growing. However, Catalonia makes a lot of money thanks to tourism and other resources. Some economists claim that if it was independent, catalonia would be richer.

September 11 is the national day of Catalonia, and every year more and more people meet. Although this day should be a day to commemorate this land, it has become a day to protest in favour of independence. Catalans are divided, and pressure and stress are present between these crowds. Last year, independent catalans built up a human chain through all the territory, from the south of France until the beginning of the Valencian community. This year they did the same, but instead of a human chain they made a giant letter “V” (for “vot”, “vencerem” and “voluntat”) in the center of Barcelona.

Last year, Artur Mas, president of Catalonia, set up a date for a referendum: November 9, although Spain did not respond well. A month ago, they proposed it again, without success. No one knows what is going to happen, but everyone agrees that that day is going to be a historic one.

In Europe there was a similar situation with Scotland. This situation, though, is much more known all over the world. Scotland voted on September 18, but independence didn’t come.
October 12 is Hispanic Day, and it commemorates when Christopher Columbus first set foot in the Americas in 1492. The other part of the population spoke: about 38,000 people that feel spanish gathered in the center of Barcelona, and claimed their desire to keep being part of Spain.

It seems like the only way to know what the majority of the town wants is by doing a referendum.
So, it’s only a matter of time before something happens, whether good for the Catalans or not. But one thing is for sure: This is going to be an exciting day for this land.


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