Spain: Secession bid a key factor in Catalonia election

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Catalans go to the polls on Thursday to vote in an election that could decide if their province breaks away from Spain. Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy made a rare campaign stop in Catalonia on Sunday.

His party stands little chance of winning the election, but Rajoy hopes a coalition of unionist parties could stop Catalonia from seceding.

After the Spanish government ruled that Catalonia's October referendum was illegal, authorities arrested key secessionist leaders on charges of rebellion and dissolved the Catalan parliament.

Al Jazeera's Karl Penhaul reports from Salou, Spain.

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