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Catalonia's head of government has issued an ultimatum to the Spanish Government and holds its independence aspirations. Madrid reacted sharply.

Catalonia: Spanish government wants to place Catalonia under forced administration

Catalonia's head of government has issued an ultimatum to the Spanish Government and holds its independence aspirations. Madrid reacted sharply.

Catalonia: Spanish government wants to place Catalonia under forced administration

The Catalan head of government Carles Puigdemont has not followed ultimate demand of Spanish central government to end all secession efforts. In a letter published by Catalan media to Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, Puigdemont renewed its dialogue offer on Thursday instead, but threatened to become independent in event of tougher measures.

Puigdemont should explain on Thursday until 10.00 a.m. Wher it will break aspirations for its own state and respect constitutional order with Catalonia as a permanent part of Spain. As Spanish Prime Minister's office has been saying, Spanish government now intends to apply article 155 of Constitution on Saturday at a special session of Cabinet.

This allows government to "take necessary resources" to force an autonomous region to fulfil its legal obligations. Since entry into force of Constitution of 1978 in Spain, article has never been applied.

A waiver of application of article 155 would be possible according to information from government circles if Puigdemont would set an early election for regional parliament in Barcelona, as reported by El Pais newspaper. Such a decision could refore be regarded as a return to legality, reby eliminating coercive measures under article 155. However, leading representatives of Catalan independence movement have spoken out against early elections.

Dialog offer remains

The Catalan government spokesman Jordi Turull had already announced on Wednesday evening that government in Barcelona would hold on to its offer for dialogue, but would not respond to call for a commitment to common State. If central government were to apply constitutional Article 155, Puigdemont should immediately put into effect region's declaration of Independence, board of Directors of Catalan government party PDeCAT (Partido Demócrata Europeo Catalán) called on Wednesday evening.

In Barcelona, on Wednesday evening, according to city police, about 2000 people demonstrated against independence of Catalonia and unity of Spanish State. A day earlier, around 200,000 demonstrators had called for release of two leading activists of independence movement, Jordi Sad and Jordi Cuixart. These were arrested for "inflammatory behavior". Spectators also called for release of activists in Champions League match of FC Barcelona against Olympiakos Piraeus.

Foreign Minister Alfonso Dastis postponed a visit to Ukraine scheduled for Thursday in order to be able to be in case of a short-term convening of Cabinet meeting in Madrid. However, Rajoy wants to take part in meeting of EU Heads of State and Government in Brussels at 3 p.m.

The development in Catalonia is taking "one for all damaging path", which inevitably has to end badly, Spanish writer Eduardo Mendoza warned according to a report of daily newspaper El Diario. As crisis will always end, re will be a painful break.

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