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A general strike in Spain's [region / regional] of Catalonia on Tuesday brought large parts of Barcelona and [another / other] cities to a standstill. Thousands of Catalans rallied and blocked roads to protest [above / over] Spanish police violence [during / while] Sunday's independence referendum. Nearly 900 people were injured at the weekend [on / in] a crackdown against voters and referendum staff. The Spanish government [declaration / declared] that the referendum was illegal and ordered the police to break it [down / up] . Spain's King Felipe VI has condemned the organizers [of / for] the referendum. In a televised address to the [nation / national] , he said they had put themselves "outside the law". He said the situation in Catalonia was "[extreme / extremely] serious" and called for national unity.

The [mayor / mayoral] of Barcelona told reporters that the Catalan people deserved to have a [voting / vote] on independence. She said: "What we need is a [democratic / democratically] response. And we need a [political / politics] solution. And we need an [inclusive / included] solution that listens to the cries of millions of people." She also called for the resignation of Spain's prime minister. More [unrest / unrested] could be on the cards. Any declaration of [independently / independence] by the Catalans could plunge Spain into a [further / farther] constitutional crisis and risk the break-up of the country. Other regions could follow Catalonia's [exampled / example] and have their own referendum. Spain's president has called on the international community to help mediate [between / among] the two sides.

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