The apparent threat comes amid heightened tensions between Catalonia and Spain as the wealthy region threatens to break away following an independence referendum held on October 1.

More than 90 per cent of the Catalonians who went to the polls voted in favour of independence, although the Spanish prime minister Mariano Rajoy and the King have rejected the results.

Spain has been rocked by the referendum results and the police violence seen against voters in Catalonia has sparked a huge backlash.

Now, Spain’s ruling party appears to have resorted to thinly-veiled threats in a bid to force Catalan leaders to back down as the region’s independence bid threatens the breakup of Spain.

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