European Affairs Minister Nathalie Loiseau said Monday that France will not recognize Catalonia if the Spanish region unilaterally declares independence.
"If there were to be a declaration of independence, it would be unilateral, and it would not be recognized," Loiseau said on CNews television.
Catalonia, which has its own language and culture and is led by a pro-independence regional government, held a referendum on Oct. 1 over secession in defiance of Spain's constitutional court, which had declared the vote illegal.
"Catalonia cannot be defined by the vote organized by the independence movement just over a week ago," the French junior minister said. "This crisis needs to be resolved through dialogue at all levels of Spanish politics."
He further added: "A hasty decision to recognize independence following such a unilateral declaration would amount to fleeing France's responsibilities."
"If independence were to be recognized - which is not something that's being discussed - the most immediate consequence would be that [Catalonia] automatically left the European Union."
Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team