07:14 GMT +320 October 2019
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    Ousted Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont, center, stands with elected Catalan lawmakers of his Together for Catalonia party at a park in Brussels

    Puigdemont to Be Once Again Nominated as Candidate for Catalan Presidency

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    MADRID (Sputnik) - The Catalan pro-independence Together for Catalonia (JxCat) political party on Saturday proposed to once again nominate former Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont as a candidate to head the regional government.

    The news came from JxCat spokesman Eduard Pujol following a meeting of the party's members in Berlin. The candidacy is expected to be officially announced before May 14.

    On Friday, Catalan lawmakers voted in favor of an amendment that would allow the regional president to be elected without his or her presence in the parliament, in a move that could return Puigdemont, who currently is in self-imposed exile, to power.

    In January, a Spanish court ruled that Puigdemont, who fled to Belgium in October to avoid sedition charges after last year's independence referendum, could only become the regional leader if he was physically present in the parliament and had a judge’s permission to attend the swearing-in session.

    However, in late February, Catalan pro-independence parties announced their plans to establish a parallel government in Brussels that would be headed by Puigdemont, the idea Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy described as "crazy."

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    presidency, Carles Puigdemont, Catalonia, Spain
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