October 16, 2017 / 8:01 AM / 5 months ago

Spanish government says Catalan response not valid - media

MADRID, Oct 16 (Reuters) - The response from Catalonia’s leader on Monday, in answer to a government requirement to clarify whether he had declared independence, was not valid, Spain’s Justice Minister Rafael Catala said on Monday according to Spanish news agency Efe.

Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont failed to clarify his stance on independence and instead said he and Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy should meet as soon as possible to start talks over the next two months.

Rajoy had said Puigdemont should answer the formal requirement with a simple “Yes” or “No” and that any ambiguous response would be considered a confirmation that a declaration of independence had been made, paving the way for the central government to take control of the region and rule it directly.

Spain’s Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria is due to make a statement at 10:30 a.m. (0830 GMT). (Reporting By Julien Toyer; Editing by Sonya Dowsett)

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