The number of Catalan residents who voted for independence of the autonomous community from Spain at the referendum has reached 2.02 mln people, or 90%, Catalonia’s government spokesman Jordi Turull said on Monday at a press conference in Barcelona on the results of the referendum on Catalonia’s independence.
"Two million twenty thousand one hundred and forty-four people, or 90%, have voted for independence , whereas 176,565, or 7%, voted against, 45,586, or 2%, of ballot papers were empty and 20,129 more were invalid," he said.
The total number of the ballot papers preserved for the vote, not taken by Spain’s authorities and counted by election committees was 2,262,424 pieces, Turull said.
These results are practically final, the government spokesman said. "These are the figures we have now. A few thousand ballot sheets have not been counted yet, but we can say that these are the final results, because the figures will hardly change," Turull assured.
On Sunday, Catalonia held a referendum on seceding from Spain. Madrid considers this referendum illegal, whereas Barcelona’s authorities said ahead of the vote they would consider the referendum lawful. "A referendum on self-determination was not held in Catalonia today. The law-governed state has preserved its power," Spain’s Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy commented on the events in the autonomous community.
Catalonia’s head Carles Puigdemont said in an official statement following the referendum results that his people had won the right "to be a free, peaceful and democratic country." "Catalonia has won the right to be an independent state constituted in the form of a republic," he stated.
According to the Catalan leader, the results of the referendum will guide the region’s authorities in their further actions. "In the coming days, the government I head will present the results of the vote to Catalonia’s government, which is the embodiment of our people’s sovereignty, so that it [the parliament] acted further in compliance with the law on referendum," Puigdemont said.