Catalonia Аhead of Мore Planned Protests by Referendum Supporters
Tensions are high in the Spanish region of Catalonia ahead of more planned protests by referendum supporters.
Overnight, police occupied the region's economy ministry as hundreds of protesters remained outside.
Catalan economy minister Josep Maria Jové was one of more than a dozen senior officials detained by authorities on Wednesday.
Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy urged separatists to abandon their plans for a 1 October referendum.
In a televised address, he asked the region's government to give up its "escalation of radicalism and disobedience".
The leader of the Catalan government Carles Puigdemont has accused Spain of "co-ordinated aggression", but Mr Rajoy insisted that Catalonia must respect Spain's laws and democracy.
Pro-independence organisations have urged protesters to return in force to the streets on Thursday.
Police searches in the Catalan capital, Barcelona, on Wednesday sparked a mass street protest, with police saying up to 40,000 people had gathered outside the devolved government's economy ministry in the city.
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