Catalonia kicks off banned independence referendum campaign

DW – September 14, 2017

Catalan separatists have officially launched their campaign for an independence referendum. The region has also said it will stop sending financial accounts to Madrid to prove public funds aren’t going to the referendum.

Crowds packed into a bull ring in the port of Tarragona on Thursday night to open the pro-independence campaign for a planned referendum on seceding from Spain.

Supporters sporting makeshift ballot boxes as hats shouted “We will vote!” as they waved around non-official ballot papers.

The high-profile event was attended by Catalan President Carles Puigdemont as well as representatives from Catalonia’s main pro-independence parties and associations.

The “yes” camp has two weeks to rally support for the vote and win over critics who are reluctant to take part in the referendum, which is due to take place on October 1.