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11:13 14 December
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Leader of Catalonia suggests suspending independence process - UPDATED-2


Pulling back from announcing separation from Spain, Catalan President Carles Puigdemont said on Tuesday that while he supports an independence declaration, one should be held off “for a few weeks” to allow for dialogue and mediation, APA reports quoting Anadolu.

 

“I assume the mandate of the people that Catalonia be converted into an independent state in the form of a republic,” he told the Catalan parliament.

 

He added: “We are suspending the declaration of independence for a few weeks, as we want a reasonable dialogue, mediation with the Spanish state.”

 

“We have to continue working together… the way to advance cannot be any other way than through democracy and peace,” he said.

 

The original speech had been delayed for an hour. Catalan government spokesperson Joan Maria Pique told Anadolu Agency that the Catalan leader had delayed the speech in light of a last-minute contact regarding “international mediation.”

 

This dramatic speech followed pleas from Europe and countries around the world requesting dialogue and compromise between the Catalan and Spanish governments.

 

“I appeal to Puigdemont not to announce a decision that would make dialogue impossible. Let's always look for what unites us,” tweeted Donald Tusk, president of the European Council, on Tuesday.

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