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Spain Will Trigger Direct Rule Over Catalonia From Madrid

The Spanish government has said it will trigger direct rule over Catalonia—an unprecedented measure—after the leader of the autonomous region threatened a formal declaration of independence, escalating the political crisis. In a Thursday morning letter to Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, Catalonian leader Carles Puigdemont threatened the declaration if the Spanish government refused talks and kept up its “repression.” In response, Rajoy announced hours later that he would hold a cabinet meeting this weekend that would move to impose direct rule in Catalonia.