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Catalan leaders meet in Brussels

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By Euronews
Carles Puigdemont and Roger Torrent meeting in Brussels.
Carles Puigdemont and Roger Torrent meeting in Brussels.

Catalonia's former leader says he will stand for re-election as regional president, despite risking arrest if he returns to Spain.

Carles Puigdemont is charged with sedition and rebellion for declaring the region's independence. The Spanish government has also threatened a legal challenge should Puigdemont regain the presidency.

Puigdemont, who is living in self-imposed exile in Brussels, floated the idea of governing remotely by video link.

"The ideal outome would be in person, it is what we would all like and it should be possible. That's our wish but there are other ways," he told reporters.

Puigdemont's meeting with Roger Torrent, president of the Catalan parliament, was moved at the last minute when Spain shut down Catalonia's office in Brussels.

"It is outrageous that the president of Catalan parliament cant hold a meeting because they physically closed the headquarters of the delegatio," Torrent said. "I have asked parliament to study the legal consequences of this arbitrary decision by the Spanish state".

Madrid closed the office under the application of Article 155 of the Spanish constitution, which strips Catalonia of its autonomy. The office is closed until further notice.