Catalan politicians unable to pass law paving way for independence vote

LAST UPDATED: 17 Aug, 2017 @ 12:50
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CATALAN politicians have failed to pass a law paving the way for an independence referendum.

But pro-independence parties hope to have passed the bill by next week.

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The law could also be voted on during the following parliament session on September 6 and 7.

MPs in the northern region aim to hold a vote on breaking away from Spain on October 1, a move that Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has challenged in court.

A draft bill was written up on July 31, with Rajoy insisting he will prevent the referendum from going ahead.

Meanwhile, thousands of Basques have marched in solidarity with Catalan independence supporters.

Protesters in the northern region, which has its own strong separatist movement, gathered in San Sebastian for the demonstration.

Some 3,000 marchers, some carrying the Catalan flag, heard speeches from secessionist politicians.

The Basque terrorist group ETA was involved in a bloody 40-year campaign to separate the region from the rest of Spain.

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