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Die Presse - Austria | Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Madrid can still change tack

Despite the large majority with which the Catalans voted in favour of independence from Spain on Sunday concessions by Madrid could still pay off, the conservative daily Die Presse believes: "The head of the Catalan regional government Artur Mas won't back down on his demand for a legally recognised vote on independence. The pressure from the nationalists is far too strong for that. So the ball is in Madrid's court. Its first goal should be to win the Catalans' trust. Talks on a new financial adjustment could send an important signal. But above all Madrid should at least consider the possibility of secession and do all it can to prevent it by finally allowing an objective discussion about the consequences. Without emotional propaganda or implausible horror scenarios. The effort could be worthwhile: despite massive campaigns in favour of independence, one in two Catalans is still unsure whether they want a new state."

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