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Catalans Woo Immigrants in Quest to Split From Spain
Catalans Woo Immigrants in Quest to Split From Spain

Catalans Woo Immigrants in Quest to Split From Spain

Catalans Woo Immigrants in Quest to Split From Spain

In a community hall in the Spanish region of Catalonia, two independence activists take the stage against a backdrop of red and yellow striped Catalan flags: a Syrian-born tourist guide and a Spanish member of parliament born in Uruguay. With barely three months to go before an independence referendum called for Oct. 1, naturalized immigrants are taking on an important and prominent role in the campaign both as activists and supporters, Reuters reported. Catalonia has one of the highest percentages of immigrants in Spain, just under 14% of residents are foreign-born, and their votes may gain crucial votes for the independence movement in what is likely to be a close-run race. “Including them in the movement for nationhood is key,” says Catalonia’s deputy governor, Oriol Junqueras, told Reuters in Barcelona. “We want to be a very open and integrated society.” Campaigners are even encouraging migrants without the right to vote to ask work mates and friends to vote for independence and are advocating Catalan nationality for all migrants living in the region if it leaves Spain.

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