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Catalonia remains deadlocked after parliamentary elections, stresses Russian senator

December 22, 2017, 13:55 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Although the supporters of independence won a fairly convincing victory, "the dead-end remains, because no one, including the winners, knows what to do next," a senator says

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© AP Photo/Bernat Armangue

MOSCOW, December 22. /TASS/. The outcome of the snap parliamentary elections in Catalonia do not change the situation radically, since no one, including the winners, knows what to do next, head of Russia’s Federation Council (upper house) International Affairs Committee Konstantin Kosachev said on Friday.

Catalonia held early parliamentary elections on Thursday, thanks to Madrid’s late October decision prompted by a major crisis following the Catalan parliament’s declaration of independence from Spain. With nearly 99% of the votes counted, three political forces favoring independence won the overwhelming majority of seats in parliament.

"The elections in Catalonia were fully predictable from the point of view of the focus on them domestically and internationally (hence, record high voter turnout). On the other hand, they were totally unpredictable in terms of their results. The overwhelming majority of forecasts said they would end ‘in a draw,’ which would mean an impasse," Kosachev wrote on his Facebook page.

Although the supporters of independence won a fairly convincing victory, "the dead-end remains, because no one, including the winners, knows what to do next," the senator noted. "Spain’s Constitution does not tolerate separatism, and now the Catalan parliamentary majority is facing a painful choice between democracy (the will of the voters is beyond doubt) and the rule of law, which stands with the country’s territorial integrity," Kosachev stressed.

In his view, the voting in Catalonia is also an obvious painful blow to the European Union, "comparable to both Brexit and Poland’s current pushback." "Brussels is carried away by games focusing on the sacred right of people in Kosovo to self-determination, while rejecting the same right for the people of Crimea. They talked a lot about minority rights in Belgium or Ukraine, ignoring the situation in Latvia and Estonia, which is no less acute. They are unable to make heads or tails of their standards and values, and now both the European Union and Spain are going to have a rough road ahead," the senator pointed out.

"I state this without the slightest fiendish delight, the situation is very complicated indeed. In this case, it would be worthwhile for ‘European democrats’ to show some interest in the Russian experience. (Russia) has learned to brilliantly tackle all issues on preserving ethnic and cultural diversity, respecting the rights of regions and harmonious federal statehood that thwarts any revival of separatism, strictly within the framework of the current [Russian] Constitution and by peaceful political means exclusively," he added.

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