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The Spanish prime minister, Mariano Rajoy, has spoken this Monday with the head of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, and the president of the European Council, Donald Tusk, by telephone to discuss the incidents surrounding the independence referendum in Catalonia this Sunday.

In his conversation with Rajoy, Donald Tusk, gave his support for Spain's constitutional order, but also asked for efforts to avoid greater tensions and the use of force.

This tweet was the first time that the president of the European Council has publicly commented on anything to do with the Catalan independence movement. Last Friday, he avoided answering a question on the topic in a press conference, passing the word to Juncker.

The call with Juncker

For his part, the head of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, talked with the Spanish prime minister in a call scheduled for 4pm this Monday, according to Commission sources. During the conversation, Juncker was in "listening mode" but repeated to Rajoy the Commission's position as expressed hours earlier in a press conference by their spokesperson. In the press conference, Margaritis Schinas, had read a statement in which the Commission called for dialogue between "all the relevant actors" in the Catalan political crisis, and emphasised that violence "can never be a tool for politics".

"We call on all the relevant actors to move very quickly now from confrontation to dialogue. Violence can never be a tool in politics," said Schinas. He also expressed his confidence in Rajoy's "leadership" in looking for solutions after a referendum that "wasn't legal". He also noted that if a referendum takes place that follows the Spanish Constitution under negotiated conditions and Catalonia becomes independent, the territory will fall automatically outside of the European Union.

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