Speaking in Barcelona on September 16, the European Commissioner for Competition and Vice-President of the Commission, Joaquín Almunia warned that "a secessionist state is not part of the European Union." Commission spokesperson Pia Ahrenkilde later confirmed that "an independent state would be a third party in relation to the EU."
Although the issue of independence for Catalonia is once again under debate in Spain, La Vanguardia reports that —
The European Commission wants to avoid politics and confine itself to a strictly legal approach in its evaluation of the consequences of a potentially independent Catalonia, an issue it insists on qualifying as "an internal question of constitutional organisation" within a member state.
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