Quim Torra is expected to win second round of votes, giving Catalonia the new government required to end direct rule from Madrid

Catalan politicians have cleared the way for a pro-independence candidate to be elected regional president and end the emergency direct rule imposed by Madrid during last year’s political crisis.

The far-left pro-independence Popular Unity Candidacy (CUP) party said it would abstain from an investiture vote in the regional parliament on Monday.

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