Catalan parliament to vote on Puigdemont successor on Saturday

Catalan parliament to vote on Puigdemont successor on Saturday

Catalonia has been in political limbo since Spain's central government sacked Puigdemont and his cabinet and imposed direct rule on the semi-autonomous region after it unilaterally declared independence on October 27.

The announcement came after Spain's Constitutional Court on Wednesday accepted an appeal form the government that blocked pro-independence politicians in Catalonia from voting in Puigdemont while he remains in exile.

What happens next? Regional lawmakers must vote in favor of Torra's candidacy.

They were also accused of mobilising thousands of pro-independence supporters to prevent police from stopping the October 1 independence referendum from going ahead.

Puigdemont had hoped to again be elected president of Catalonia in December, when separatists won fresh elections in the region.

He promised to restore Catalonia's laws suspended by Spanish courts and start drafting a constitution for a future Catalan Republic, stressing that he would "not give up anything" and would "assume responsibility for what comes from our actions".

But since then, every candidate picked by the separatist camp has fallen flat. A new election is likely to return similar results to the last, a poll showed on Friday.

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But since then, all candidates proposed by the separatist camp to lead Catalonia have fallen flat, as they are either overseas and wanted by Spain, or already in prison, charged with rebellion.

After a long career with the Swiss insurance firm Winterthur, Torra used a severance package to set up a publishing house in 2008.

"He is the most radical that Puigdemont could find and the only one who voluntarily accepted to be the puppet of Mr. Puigdemont", she told reporters.

Puigdemont is now in Germany after being detained there in March on a European arrest warrant against him issued by Spain.

Puigdemont is overseas in self-exile and faces jail if he returns, while other candidates such as civic leader Jordi Sanchez are in prison, charged with rebellion for their role in the independence drive.

Puigdemont is free to move around Germany after being released from detention pending a German court decision on a Spanish extradition request, but he may not leave the country.

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