BARCELONA, SPAIN - OCTOBER 10: President of Catalonia, Carles Puigdemont, speaks in his address to the Catalan Parliament at the Palau del Parlament de Catalunya on October 10, 2017 in Barcelona, Spain. After the October 1 referendum, and weeks of build-up, Catalonia's president is to address the Catalan Parliament in which a declaration of independence is expected to be made. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

Regional premier Carles Puigdemont has pulled back from the brink of a full-blown unilateral declaration of independence for Catalonia last night, requesting a last minute series of negotiations be started to resolve the crisis.
“Thanks to the results of the referendum of 1 October, Catalonia has earned the right to be an independent state,” Mr Puigdemont told the region’s parliament in Barcelona. 
“If everybody acts responsibly, this conflict can be resolved calmly. It won’t be us that prevents that from happening.”
Watched by over 1,000 different accredited media outlets, more than 300 foreign – a double all-time record for the Catalan parliament – and by Spanish premier Mariano Rajoy from his official residence in Madrid, Mr Puigdemont said: “We are reaching out in the hope of dialogue.”
“I ask the citizens of Catalonia to continue to express themselves in a civilized, peaceful way, the parties to contribute with their words to lessen the tension …
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