>> Catalonia's leader Carles Puigdemont on Thursday, said he would not hold the new regional election to break the deadlock between Madrid and separatists wanting to split from Spain, sharpening a political crisis that could trigger more violent clashes. Puigdemont had been expected to announce an election to head off moves by Madrid to take direct control of the region in the next few days.
But, he said the central government had not provided sufficient guarantees that holding an election would prevent the imposition of direct rule.>>
> He said it was now up to the Catalon Parliament to move forward with the mandate to break from Spain following an independence referendum on October 1st, a vote which Madrid had declared illegal and tried to stop.
Some independent supporters are pushing him to unilaterally declare independence. Puigdemont's stand sets the stage for the Spanish Senate on Friday to approve the takeover of Catalonia's institutions and police. And give the government of Madrid the power to remove the Catalan president. But this could spark confrontation on the streets as some independent supporters have promised to mount a campaign of civil disobedience.