November 12, 2017 9:51 am

Spanish Prime Minister urges Catalans to vote out separatists in early election


Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy is urging Catalans to oust separatists from their regional parliament in an early election he has called for Dec. 21.

Rajoy has told members of his conservative Popular Party in Barcelona that “we want a massive turnout to open up a new period of normalcy.”

READ MORE: Spain’s political crisis deepens as Catalonia rules out snap election

Rajoy’s visit to Catalonia’s main city was his first to the northeastern region since he used extraordinary powers to stifle its secession push. After Catalonia’s Parliament voted Oct. 27 in favour of a declaration of independence, Rajoy responded by firing its government, dissolving its parliament and calling the early election.

Spain’s leader says “it’s urgent to return a sense of normality to Catalonia and do so as soon as possible to lower the social and economic tensions.”

© 2017 Reuters

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