A chaotic 24 hours in Spain's Catalonia region

Gerard Pique in tears

"We are to declare independence 48 hours after all the official results are counted", said Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont in an interview with the BBC Tuesday. Puigdemont is seeking global mediation following the vote, saying he wants to reach an understanding with the Spanish government, and avoid a "traumatic break". Some taped up their mouths to symbolise being silenced.

Scenes of armored Spanish police swinging truncheons and firing rubber bullets at peaceful voters have been widely condemned, with the European Union calling for talks to break the stalemate between Madrid and Barcelona.

Spain's National Court on Wednesday said it will quiz two senior officers of Catalonia's regional police force and the leaders of two pro-Catalan independence civic groups who have been placed under investigation for sedition.

Officials claim that 90% of Catalans who voted backed leaving Spain, but turnout for the referendum barely exceeded 40%.

Catalonia's leaders appear intent on declaring independence from Spain in the coming days.

"I've seen how President Puigdemont has flooded the streets with his followers to stop people obeying the law and to make them disrespect justice", she said.

Local authorities said about 900 people were injured in confrontations with police.

The European Union saw the referendum as a violation of the Spanish constitution and privately anxious about other secessionist movements in Europe. "We want a new understanding of the Spanish state", he said.

Spain's Caixabank, Catalonia's largest lender, and ministers reassured bank customers that their deposits are secure from the growing crisis.

The French Foreign Ministry said Monday that Paris supported Spain's unity and integrity, adding that Paris was confident in Spain's democratic ability to hold a peaceful political dialogue within constitutional law. correspondent reported on Tuesday.

Independence supporters gather in Barcelona's main square, Spain, Sunday, Oct. 1, 2017. Spain's Justice Minister Rafael Catal√° warned on Monday morning that the central government in Madrid was prepared to use its emergency powers to prevent a unilateral declaration of independence.

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