On Sunday, Catalans are holding a referendum vote for independence from Spain. The Spanish government is set against it. But many pro-independence business owners are ready to weather the crisis.
Police in Barcelona said roughly one million people have taken to the streets for the region's "Diada" day. Catalan separatists are hoping to build momentum for a new independence bid after last year's failed attempt.
Quim Torra called on citizens to march for the independence cause in the upcoming regional celebrations. He said his government was open to dialogue, but would 'never renounce their right to self-determination.'
Spain's new government has promised to lift Madrid’s financial controls on Catalonia in what it said it was a "gesture of normalization." An independence referendum for the region remains out of the question.
After an international arrest warrant against him was dropped, ex-Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont returned to Belgium from Germany. The ousted leader vowed to continue fighting for Catalonia's independence from Spain.
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