A snap election has been triggered in Catalonia after the far-left CUP said it would not back Artur Mas for another term as president.
CUP, an anti-capitalist party which rejects Catalan membership of NATO and the European Union, has held the key to the formation of the Catalan government since elections in September.
Pro-independence parties won a majority of seats but CUP has repeatedly rejected the candidature of Mas, a liberal-democrat.
Mas heads the pro-independence “Junts pel Sí” alliance that won 62 seats in the 135-seat parliament last September and needed the support of CUP’s 10 seats to secure a workable majority.
After three months of debates, CUP members finally decided at a meeting Sunday afternoon not to support Mas as leader of a pro-independence coalition.
Although CUP members have said they favor the establishment of a Catalan republic separate from Spain, they have on repeated occasions said Mas was unacceptable to them as a coalition leader.
In order to be re-elected head of the Catalan government in a vote in parliament, Mas would need just two more CUP lawmakers to back him. Mas’s Junts pel Sí alliance, won 62 seats in the Catalan Parliament and need at least 2 votes from CUP which has 10 seats.
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