[Ed. – Thursday — today, 19 Oct — is the deadline. The announcement was made Thursday morning, Spanish time. Where this goes will have significant repercussions across Europe, for good or ill.]
The Spanish government is to suspend Catalonia’s autonomy and impose direct rule after the region’s president refused to abandon the push for independence that has led to Spain’s biggest political crisis for 40 years.
The announcement of the unprecedented measure came after the Catalan president, Carles Puigdemont, threatened a unilateral declaration of independence if the Spanish government did not agree to talks on the issue. In a letter to the Spanish prime minister, Mariano Rajoy, sent on Thursday morning — the deadline set by Madrid for the region to abandon its independence plans — Puigdemont said discussions were the only way to resolve the crisis. …
In a statement on Thursday morning, the Spanish government said Puigdemont had again failed to confirm whether independence had been declared.