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Title
Catalan President Artur Mas steps down
to avoid new elections
Dateline
09/01/2016
Published
10/01/2016
Location
Generalitat
Source
Barcelona Center News
Format
HD Broadcast Quality
President of Catalan Artur Mas stated he would step aside to a new regional president, avoiding the need to call new elections during a press conference in Barcelona, Saturday.

"I am stepping aside and will not be standing as a Junts pel Si candidate for the re-election of president of the regional government," he told reporters. "We cannot undertake the ongoing (pro-independence) Catalan project if the government in Catalonia cannot count on a stable parliament," Mas added.

Catalans have been demanding for weeks an agreement between Catalan pro-independence forces Junts pel Si (Together for Yes or JxSi) and Popular Unity Candidacy (CUP), to allow for the inauguration of a regional president and avoid new elections in March. If no agreement is reached before 10 January, a new regional election will be held.

In November, Catalan lawmakers in Barcelona began the process of secession from Spain, with the aim of achieving political independence by 2017, despite strong opposition from Madrid. In a vote held in the Catalan parliament on 9 November, 72 parliamentarians voted in favour of the resolution for secession from Spain, with only 63 voting against.
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