Catalonia leader unafraid of arrest upon declaring independence

The leader of Catalonia, Carles Puigdemont said he was not afraid of being arrested for his involvement in leading the independence referendum, reports Reuters. When asked about his possible arrest in a press conference on Thursday, Mr Puigdemont said, “Personally I am not afraid of that.” The Catalonia leader said his government will ask regional parliament to declare independence on Monday.

Turkey, Iran and Iraq to work together on sanctions plan against Kurdistan

Turkey, Iran and Iraq will work together to formulate a sanctions strategy that will halt Iraqi Kurdistan’s oil exports reports the Financial Times. Speaking after a one day trip to Iran, Turkeys president Tayyip Erdogan said that the three nations would act jointly to place sanctions on the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG). Mr Erdogan added that Turkey would soon close its borders Iraqi Kurdistan, stating, “If a decision will be made on closing oil taps in the region, that will be made by us. Turkey, Iran and Iraq’s central government will do so together. The northern Iraqi leadership is...

17 shot dead by soldiers in English speaking regions of Cameroon

Seventeen people were shot dead in English speaking parts of Cameroon after soldiers opened fire at demonstrators calling for independence. Rallies were held in October 1 to celebrate the anniversary of the re-unification of Francophone and Anglophone regions into Cameroon in 1961. In an attempt to quash planned independence demonstrations from Anglophone communities, the government deployed troops to the South-West and North-West regions. Internet and social media access has been blocked since Tuesday. The capital city of the Anglophone region, Bamenda has been described as in a state of "...

Catalonia could declare independence next week, indicates leader

Catalonia’s leader Carles Puigdemont indicated that the region could declare independence next week, as he criticised a speech by Spain’s King Felipe VI. Mr Puigdemont told the BBC on Tuesday that his government would declare independence "at the end of this week or the beginning of next" after a referendum marred by police brutality led to 90% of voters backing a separate Catalan state. The Catalan leader also criticised a speech by the Spanish king who stated the referendum was illegal and undemocratic. He stated the king had for "deliberately ignoring millions of Catalans" and “endorses...

Over 300,000 demonstrate on streets of Barcelona in protest of Spain's violent crack down on voters

Hundreds of thousands marched through the streets of Catalonia on Tuesday, in protest of Spain’s violent crack-down during the Catalan independence referendum. At least 300,000 took to the streets of Barcelona, in protest of the Spanish police actions which saw voters dragged by their hair and shot at by rubber bullets. Responding to the protests, Spain’s Interior Minister, Juan Ignacio Zoido said, “We see how day after day the government of Catalonia is pushing the population to the abyss and inciting rebellion in the streets.” The Minister further warned that het Spanish government “would...

Iraq announces financial sanctions as Kurdistan sets parliamentary election date to consolidate power

Iraq’s central bank told the Kurdish Region Government that it would no longer sell dollars to four of Kurdistan’s leading banks and stop all foreign currency transfers on Tuesday. The announcement came as the KRG announced it will be holding presidential and parliamentary elections on November 1, a move that to consolidate its power in the Kurdistan region following the results of the independence referendum. Earlier in the day Iraq’s federal parliament threatened to exclude Kurdish members who took part in the referendum on the basis that it was unconstitutional, reports Reuters.

UN Rights Chief calls for independent probe into Spain's violent crack-down on Catalan independence referendum

The United Nations Human Rights Chief Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein called for an independent probe into Spain’s violent crack-down on the Catalan independence referendum in a statement made on Monday. Calling for political dialogue to address the unrest, the human rights chief said, “I am very disturbed by the violence in Catalonia on Sunday. With hundreds of people reported injured, I urge the Spanish authorities to ensure thorough, independent and impartial investigations into all acts of violence. Police responses must at all times be proportionate and necessary. I firmly believe that the current...

Catalonia calls for international mediation following 90% vote for independence

Catalanonia’s president Carles Puigdemont called for international mediation in resolving his parliament’s independence dispute with Spain following a violent crackdown by Spanish authorities during the Catalan independence referendum. Announcing, in a televised statement, that “Catalonia have won the right to an independent state in the form of a republic,” Mr Puigdemont stressed “this European commission must encourage international mediation. It cannot look the other way any longer,” A spokesperson for the Catalan government said that initial counts indicate that 90% of the 2.26million...

Spanish police storm polling stations as Catalans vote in referendum 

Spanish police have stormed polling stations in Catalonia as voting began this morning in an independence referendum. Riot police have seized ballot papers and boxes and physically restrained people trying to vote. The referendum was declared illegal by the Spanish government, which has over recent months sought to do everythign in its power to prevent it from being held. The government is believed to have deployed 25,000 police officers in view of disrupting the poll. Thousands of Catalans slept overnight in the polling stations in order to ensure they would not be prevented from voting. The...

US calls on nations to suspend weapons supply to Myanmar until military accountability is ensured

The United States Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley called for nations to suspend weapons supplies to Myanmar until there were adequate accountability measures in place to deal with the ongoing military violence against the Rohingya Muslims. Speaking at the United Nations on Thursday, Ms Haley said, “We cannot be afraid to call the actions of the Burmese authorities what they appear to be – a brutal, sustained campaign to cleanse the country of an ethnic minority.” The US Ambassador further called on the UN Security Council to “shame senior Burmese leaders” for their involvement in...

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