After this evening's speech by Catalan president Carles Puigdemont, who finally declined to call regional elections and put the next step in the hands of the Catalan Parliament, Junts pel Sí (Together for Yes) and CUP (Popular Unity Candidacy) have announced a declaration of independence for this Friday. Junts pel Sí is the currently governing alliance, of which Puigdemont is a member, a government installed thanks to CUP's support.
"Tomorrow we will finish setting a new course for our country". That was the statement from the president of Junts pel Sí, Lluís Corominas, at the start of today's Parliament debate. Corominas defended the mandate they take from the 1st October referendum and strongly criticised the response from the Spanish state which has culminated in the planned usage of article 155 of the Spanish Constitution to intervene in Catalan autonomy. He started his speech making reference to the leader of pro-independence organisations, Jordi Sànchez and Jordi Cuixart, who remain in prison awaiting trial, accused of sedition for organising demonstrations in the run-up to the referendum. This comment was greeted by a long standing ovation from the JxSí, CUP and CSQP (Catalonia Yes We Can) deputies.
CUP, for their part, made similar comments. Anna Gabriel, the party's spokesperson, said that "we can still open a debate and we will try to have intelligence survive", referring to the declaration of independence. As for the application of article 155, the deputy said that it's a demonstration of a "thirst for revenge and humiliation". "We're approaching the suspension of democracy in Catalonia", said Gabriel, who was also critical that this action would be "supported by the European Union".
The Parliament's session started with short statements of their positions from Junts pel Sí and CUP, the groups that proposed the debate specifically on the application of article 155. Both agreed that, in the face of the attitude of the Spanish government, the response has to be moving forward with realising the mandate of the 1st October referendum.