Catalan Voters Endorse Greater Autonomy (John Ward Anderson, June 19, 2006, Washington Post)

Voters in northeastern Spain overwhelmingly approved a referendum Sunday giving their region, Catalonia, broad new autonomous powers, according to nearly complete preliminary returns. Many analysts see the autonomy measure as a model that could help promote peace talks between Spain’s government and separatists in the Basque part of the country.

About 74 percent of the voters who cast ballots in Catalonia, a region of about 7 million people centered on the cosmopolitan Mediterranean city of Barcelona, approved the autonomy measure, according to a tally of almost 99 percent of the vote that was posted on the Internet by the region’s government. About 21 percent voted no.

Dreams of a unified Europe were never going to withstand the reality of continental nationalism.

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