MADRID (AP) -- A spokesman for European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has reiterated that the northeastern Catalonia region of Spain would be out of the European Union if it secedes from Spain and be forced to reapply for admittance.
Margaritis Schinas didn't mention Catalonia by name while answering questions Thursday from reporters in Brussels, but said any part of an EU nation that breaks away would become a "third country with respect to the union and may apply to become a member of the union."
Separatists hope to win a majority of seats in the regional Catalonia parliament on Sept. 27.
Pro-independence parties say victory would allow them to unilaterally declare independence in 2017.
The central government in Madrid says independence for Catalonia is unconstitutional and won't be allowed.