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Catalonia Pro-Independence Parties Seen Losing Majority in Election
International

Catalonia Pro-Independence Parties Seen Losing Majority in Election

Catalonia’s pro-independence parties were seen losing their parliamentary majority in the regional election on Dec. 21, an official poll showed on Monday.
Pro-independence party Junts per Catalunya was seen winning 25-26 seats, ERC another 32 seats and extreme-left party CUP 9 seats, according to the poll carried out by Sociological Research Centre (CIS), Reuters reported.
That would give the pro-independence camp just 67 seats in the 135-seat regional parliament, stripping them of the previous slim majority.
The government’s People’s Party (PP) would win just 7 seats while the Socialists would take 21 and the market friendly Ciudadanos 31-32 seats, the poll showed. CatComu-Podem, the Catalan arm of the anti-austerity Podemos party, could win 9 seats, according to the survey.

 Former Leader Faces Extradition
Meanwhile, axed Catalan separatist leader Carles Puigdemont arrived Monday for an extradition hearing in Belgium as Spain seeks to have him sent back to face sedition charges over his region’s independence drive, AFP reported.
A judge behind closed doors in Brussels will hear from lawyers for Puigdemont and four of his former ministers, who all fled to Belgium in October despite a summons to appear in court in Spain, claiming they would not get a fair trial.
Prosecutors last month asked the judge to approve the European arrest warrant issued by Madrid for the five in the opening round of what could become a protracted courtroom battle.
A police source said Puigdemont and the others had arrived for the hearing, which comes on the eve of the official start of campaigning for December 21 elections in Catalonia.
Madrid wants the polls to “restore normality” to the wealthy northeastern region, which declared independence unilaterally following a hotly disputed October 1 referendum.
Puigdemont’s lawyer said at the weekend he will remain in Belgium until after the elections.

 

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