October 27, 2017 / 11:34 PM / a year ago

Mexico will not recognise Catalonia's independence - President

Mexico's President Enrique Pena Nieto is pictured after delivering his speech during a ceremony ahead of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Los Pinos presidential residence in Mexico City, Mexico, July 21, 2016. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido Picture Supplied by Action Images

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexico will not recognise Catalonia’s declaration of independence from Spain, Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto wrote in a post on Twitter on Friday evening.

The political turmoil in Spain intensified on Friday as the Madrid government dismissed Catalonia’s president and parliament hours after the region declared independence.

Pena Nieto made it clear he will stand beside Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy as he confronts the nation’s most acute political crisis since it embraced democracy in 1978.

“Mexico will not recognise the unilateral declaration of independence of Catalonia,” Pena Nieto wrote. “We hope for a political and peaceful solution.”

Nations including France, Germany and the United States have also voiced their support for Spanish unity.

Spain was plunged into uncertainty on Oct. 1 when Catalonia, a prosperous northeastern state that accounts for 20 percent of Spain’s gross domestic product, held an independence referendum, though courts had declared the proceedings illegal. Separatists declared victory despite a participation of only 43 percent.

Shortly after the referendum, Mexico’s Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray said in a statement that the country favoured a unified Spain.

Reporting by Julia Love; Editing by Sandra Maler

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