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Catalonia faces uncertainty amid independence standoff

09 October 2017

And while the motion describes the referendum as an "expression of the democratic will of the people of Catalonia", it does not explicitly say that region should now become independent as a result.

Careful not to undermine Rajoy, the European Union has merely called for dialogue between the sides.

A senior member of the Catalan regional government called for dialogue with Spain, saying that all of Europe faces economic damage unless a resolution is found. Raul Romeva, foreign affairs chief for the separatist government in Barcelona, insisted that the door was open for talks if Rajoy was willing to engage.

About 10 companies have chose to relocate their legal headquarters from Catalonia to other places in Spain over fears of an unilateral declaration of independence, local media reported on Saturday.

A violent crackdown by police seeking to thwart the vote in the region sparked an worldwide outcry.

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Secession is deeply divisive: In the disputed referendum, 90 per cent of Catalans voted to break off from Spain, but the ballot was boycotted by most pro-union Catalans, and turnout was only 43 per cent.

However, they are seen by those in other regions to be one of the main beneficiaries of state handouts by citizens such as Iciar - with Spanish media outputs claiming they "owe" the government over €52 million it is clear that independence would have an economic effect on both parties. But Rajoy assured Catalan leaders that there "is still time" to backtrack and avoid the imposition of direct rule from Madrid.

Asked specifically about article 155, he said: "I am not ruling out anything that the law says".

The gap between Spain and Germany's 10-year bond yield shrank to around 118 basis points - having stretched out to 136 bps last week at the height of worries about a conflict between Catalonia and the central government in Madrid.

The region of Catalonia, home to 7.5 million people in the northeast, is crucial to Spain, which is the EU's fifth-biggest economy and a member of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation. "People must be the priority; you must take them into account". During the event, Vargas Llosa said that though nationalism is wreaking havoc in the region right now, Spanish democracy is here to stay, and no plot for independence can destroy it.

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Spain has plunged into a political crisis since Catalan leaders went forward with an independence referendum on October 1 despite the country's constitutional court outlawing the vote.

"Because why not invite Celtic or Rangers to the Premier League, who are part of Great Britain, it makes more sense than to invite Barcelona?".

That shocked even many Catalans who were opposed to independence and sparked angry demonstrations against the police.

The vote was not held according to official electoral standards as there were no regular voter lists, electoral commission or observers.

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Catalonia faces uncertainty amid independence standoff