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    Independence referendum in Catalonia

    For First Time Since 2012, Catalans Reject Independence From Spain: Poll

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    According to a poll by CEO, an autonomous administrative body of the Catalan government, 45,3 percent of those asked would vote "no" when asked "Do you want Catalonia to become an independent state?", while 44,5 percent would say "yes".

    MOSCOW, December 19 (Sputnik) – For the first time since 2012, when the region’s sovereignty drive began to gather momentum, more people are against Catalan independence than for it, a poll by CEO, an autonomous administrative body of the Catalan government, found Friday.

    According to the poll, 45,3 percent of those asked would vote "no" when asked "Do you want Catalonia to become an independent state?", while 44,5 percent would say "yes".

    The poll also found that 57,2 percent of those asked participated in the non-binding independence referendum on in November.

    Over 1,000 Spaniards over the age of 18 who live in Catalonia took part in the telephone interview.

    The first-of-its-kind result will be a blow to Artur Mas, the President of Catalonia, who was lobbying for the region's independence with a non-binding referendum this year.

    On November 9, Catalonia went ahead with an informal independence vote after opinion polls showed the vast majority of Catalans to be in favor of a plebiscite. A total 2,3 out of 5,4 million residents of Catalonia, eligible to vote, took part in the referendum. More than 80 percent voted for independence. The Spanish government dismissed it the vote as unconstitutional and filed complaints with the constitutional court.

    The calls for separation started in the midst of the economic crisis in Spain and mass unemployment.

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