Several provinces across Europe are looking nervously to see what happens in Catalonia these days. Just as the Spanish region, they also want independence.
Depending on what will happen in Spain next week, Europe could be faced with multiple demands from mostly rich European regions wanting to break away from their poorer and culturally different neighbours with whom they currently reside in a same country.
The most stringent cases are in Italy, the UK, Spain (and parts of France) and Belgium
ITALY: Northern Italy is far richer than the South, with many political parties in the north claiming that the financial transfers must stop. The regions of Lombardy and Veneto have seen what is happening in Catalonia and plan referendums on October 22, hoping for more autonomous rule. Italy's Constitutional Court blocked those plans already though. South Tyrol has also been seeking for more independence from the Rome central government.
UK: It is no surprise that there was a pro-Catalonia march in Edinburgh earlier this week. The secessionist Scottish party of First Minister Nicola Sturgeon hopes for a split from Britain and a repeat of her first unsuccessful referendum for Scottish independence from the UK should Brexit talks falter.
SPAIN (and parts of France): for three decades, the Basque independence movement had its own terrorist organisation known as ETA, committing bomb attacks on many of the Spanish central government buildings. If the Catalonian independence goes through, the Basques in the north of Spain (and the south of France) will likely also want their own nation.
BELGIUM: At the heart of Europe lies Belgium, a country with three official languages, three parliaments and regions, all working together in a tiny country. But the northern Flemish speaking population says the financial transfers to the French speaking Walloon south have to stop at a certain point, and for this reason they have voted the nationalist NVA into the federal government, with an aim of breaking up the country. As the European centre Brussels is the Belgian capital, this would be a disaster for Europe of course.