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Catalan crisis: Spain's Rajoy in Catalonia for first visit since direct rule

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By Euronews
Catalan crisis: Spain's Rajoy in Catalonia for first visit since direct rule

<p>Spain’s Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has made his first visit to Catalonia since imposing direct rule on the region a fortnight ago.</p> <p>Addressing the crowds at a campaign event in Barcelona he showed support for his Popular Party’s candidates ahead of regional elections next month. </p> <p>Spain’s government called the election after Catalonia’s Parliament voted in favour of a declaration of independence on 27 October.</p> <p>His visit comes a day after hundreds of thousands of Catalans protested against the jailing of regional officials for their push for independence from Spain. </p> <p>The demonstrators gathered on an avenue next to the regional parliament building waving Catalan independence flags and chanting “Freedom!” while some held up banners announcing: “SOS Democracy”.</p> <p>Police estimated the number of protesters at 750,000.</p>