Catalonia’s parliament has voted to petition for a referendum to break away from Spain.
The ‘Yes’ is certain to put it on a collision course with Madrid, which remains opposed to any ballot on the region’s independence.
87 to 43 voted in favour, with 3 abstentions.
Outside the Catalan Parliament a few dozen protesters gathered both for and against staying in Spain.
Polls show roughly half of all Catalans want to leave Spain, but as many as 80 percent want a right to vote on the matter.
Despite the latest push for an independence, Spain’s prime minister Mariano Rajoy has vowed to block any referendum on constitutional grounds.