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Spain's prime minister gives Catalonia until Oct. 19 to drop independence bid

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Spain's prime minister gives Catalonia until Oct. 19 to drop independence bid

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy told parliament that the Catalan government had until Oct. 16 to respond as to whether it declared independence from Spain, Reuters reported.

If the Catalan government confirms its declaration of independence, it would be given three more days, or until Oct. 19, to rectify it, the report said. Failure to do so could push Rajoy to trigger Article 155 of the Spanish Constitution and take control of Catalonia, an autonomous region.

Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont said Oct. 10 that the region had voted to secede from Spain but would not put independence into effect and instead sought a dialogue with the Spanish government.

Puigdemont told CNN that Catalonia is prepared to hold negotiations with Madrid but "without preconditions."

"We are at a point where the most important thing that there is no previous condition to sit down and talk, to accept that we have to talk, we need to talk in the right conditions," Puigdemont said.