Huge interest in Catalan independence process at European Parliament
Several hundred people attended an event at the European Parliament in Brussels on Tuesday night to hear more about Catalonia's forthcoming independence referendum.
The event was addressed by Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont, as well as Vice President Oriol Junqueras, and Foreign Minister Raul Romeva.
Oriol Junqueras is a former EFA MEP.
The event was organised by EFA MEPs from Esquerra Republicana, Josep-Maria Terricabras and Jordi Solé, jointly with ALDE's Ramon Tremosa.
Puigdemont told the conference that "Europe must be part of the solution" to the situation. He said: "this year, Catalonia will freely decide on its future by means of a legitimate and legal referendum."
Junqeras said that "democracy is the best way to ensure efficient economic policies and greater social justice."
Pro-independence parties won a majority of seats at the Catalan elections of 2015 and the Catalan government has announced plans to hold an independence referendum, expected in September 2017.
The government, which favours statehood within the European Union, wants to see Catalonia choose its own constitutional future freely and democratically.