WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States says Catalonia is an "integral part of Spain" and that it supports Spanish government efforts to keep the nation "strong and united."

State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert says the two NATO allies "cooperate closely to advance our shared security and economic priorities."

Her statement shows America's clear opposition to Catalonia seceding from Spain and establishing an independent republic.

Lawmakers in the Spanish region's parliament voted to do exactly that on Friday. Moments later, the Spanish Senate voted to authorize the government to take control of the prosperous northeastern region.

Nauert said: "The United States supports the Spanish government's constitutional measures to keep Spain strong and united."