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Catalonia promises not to give up independence bid

October 17, 16:21 UTC+3 MADRID

On October 1, Catalonia held a referendum on seceding from Spain

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© AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti

MADRID, October 17. /TASS/. Catalan authorities have said they have no intention of giving up their plans to seek independence, Catalan Government Spokesman Jordi Turull said on Tuesday.

He noted that the Catalan leadership "opened the door for dialogue," while "the Spanish government closed it." "Surrendering is not part of the scenarios considered by this government [in Catalonia]," he said, adding that negotiations are a priority for the autonomy.

"We still have to decide on the format of our response [to Spanish Prime Minister Mariano] Rajoy, but we will not tell him anything new compared to Monday," Turull assured.

The Spanish premier earlier gave Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont until October 16 to answer the request whether independence had been proclaimed. In his message, the regional leader called for negotiations but failed to provide a clear explanation concerning the situation with independence.

At present, the autonomy’s leaders have until Thursday to remedy the situation. Otherwise, Madrid can apply Article 155 of the Spanish Constitution known as the ‘nuclear option’, which would inhibit Catalonia’s self-governance.

On October 1, Catalonia held a referendum on seceding from Spain. A total of 90% of the voters, or more than two million people, said "yes" to Catalonia’s independence. Madrid said the referendum was illegal and refused to recognize its results.

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