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It was approved in a half-empty chamber as the opposition parties walked out in protest. The vast majority of those inside voted in favor: 70 against 10 against. Earlier, the parliament approved to vote in secret. The vote and the referendum held on October 1st were deemed illegal by the Spanish Constitutional Court. Carme Forcadell, the speaker, just announced it. She may face charges in addition to other high-ranking officials.

This is the beginning of a constituent process. in any case, it will be trumped by the Spanish authorities.  In parallel, the Spanish Senate is debating the suspension of the Catalan autonomy, invoking Article 155 of the Spanish Constitution.

Update:  Spanish Senate suspends Catalan autonomy invoking 155

Here is the swift reaction from Spain’s PM Mariano Rajoy. He asks people to stay calm and says the rule of law will return to Catalonia.

EUR/USD is ticking down. The bigger moves are in the Spanish stock index, the IBEX 35.

Helicopters have been flying above Barcelona’s city center all day.

Yesterday, there were hopes for a resolution of the crisis: calling elections in Catalonia. This would have prevented the declaration of independence (DUI) and suspending the autonomy. However, Catalonia’s President Carles Puigdemont eventually rejected it. He said he did not receive the necessary guarantees from the Spanish state.

EUR/USD has been suffering from the ECB’s decision more than from the Catalan crisis. However, Spain is the eurozone’s fourth-largest economy and Catalonia is a rich region.

Photo taken from Catalan Broadcaster TV3.