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Catalonia vote: Spain expected to impose direct rule

Catalonia vote: Spain expected to impose direct rule
From BBC - October 20, 2017

The Spanish cabinet is expected to approve measures allowing the government to impose direct rule over Catalonia.

Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy meets with his cabinet almost three weeks after the region held a referendum.

The Spanish government says the vote was illegal, but Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont says he has been given a mandate to declare independence.

As a result, the central government is preparing to take back power.

It is expected to trigger Article 155 of the constitution, which allows it to impose direct rule in a crisis, taking back a region's devolved powers, for the first time.

Other moves may include taking control of Catalonia's regional police force.

However, Article 155 does not give the government the power to fully suspend autonomy.

The country has been in crisis since the vote was held on 1 October.

Of the 43% of Catalans who reportedly voted, 90% were in favour of independence. Most anti-independence voters boycotted the ballot.

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