What the ed­i­to­ri­als said

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Cat­alo­nia stands “on the edge of the abyss”, said El País (Madrid). Its lead­ers “are still con­sid­er­ing go­ing ahead with their sui­ci­dal plans”. They should un­der­stand the con­se­quences. As the re­cent marches show, the peo­ple of the re­gion are far from united. Declar­ing in­de­pen­dence would “break Cata­lan so­ci­ety in two”. A head-on col­li­sion with the Span­ish state would fol­low, with vast dam­age to Cat­alo­nia’s econ­omy. But Mar­i­ano Ra­joy, Spain’s PM, must re­spond to Puigde­mont’s of­fer of talks, said The Times. His “overly rigid strat­egy is at least partly to blame for the worst con­sti­tu­tional cri­sis in re­cent Span­ish his­tory”. With­out a di­a­logue, Spain will face years of con­fronta­tion and divi­sion.

Even now a deal should be pos­si­ble, said The Econ­o­mist. Any set­tle­ment would have to in­volve an of­fi­cial in­de­pen­dence ref­er­en­dum, an idea bit­terly op­posed by Madrid. But if Cata­lans were of­fered a few ex­tra pow­ers, in­clud­ing the right to raise and keep more of their own taxes and greater pro­tec­tion for their own lan­guage, they would very likely opt to stay in­side a united Spain.

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