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The Archbishop of Barcelona has condemned the violence during Sunday's Catalan independence referendum as "deplorable".

He went on to back the Spanish government, insisting the independence referendum was illegal and undemocratic, warning that the region needs to ensure constitutional order and the rule of law.

Puigdemont also criticised Spain's King Felipe VI, who on Tuesday lambasted the "irresponsible behaviour" of the Catalan leaders. The Catalan government said that around 2.26 million of the region's 5.34 million voters were able to cast their vote on Sunday.

In his televised address to the nation, the king said the Catalan leaders who organised the referendum showed their "disrespect to the powers of the state".

The king's speech was a response to the thousands of Catalan residents that hit the streets to protest the violent crackdown inflicted over the weekend by Spanish authorities attempting to block the vote, according to the outlet.

Catalonia, a region of 7.5 million people in north-eastern Spain, has its own language and culture and Barcelona is its capital.

Puigdemont warned that if the Spanish government attempted to intervene and take control of Catalonia's government, it would be "an error which changes everything".

Protestors, many of them students, waved the Catalan independence flag Monday and held up signs demanding more democracy outside the headquarters of the Spanish police in Barcelona.

Catalan President Puigdemont will make a televised address at 9 p.m. on Wednesday following a makeshift independence referendum on October 1.

Bartomeu confirmed two directors, vice-president Carles Vilarrubi and Jordi Mones, had resigned following an extraordinary general meeting on Monday.

Catalonia called a strike Tuesday against the Madrid government's forceful suppression of the independence referendum vote.

"We have all seen what has happened in Catalonia with the aim of the Generalitat (Catalan Parliament) for the illegal proclamation of independence of Catalonia", began the King.

Carles Puigdemont, the region's elected leader, has asked for European Union mediation in negotiations and said Catalonia has "won the right to an independent state".


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