People draped in independence flags listen to the Catalan parliament's session on a phone in downtown in Barcelona, Spain, Thursday, Oct. 26, 2017. (AP Photo/Santi Palacios)
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Spanish lawmakers are poised to adopt extraordinary measures Friday to seize control of rebel region Catalonia in a bid to frustrate its independence drive, though separatists are likely to push back.Spain and Catalonia have been locked in a constitutional standoff since a "Yes" vote in the unregulated plebiscite which secessionist leaders hold up as a popular mandate for independence for the region of 7.5 million people.Madrid turned to Article 155 of the constitution -- a never-before-used provision designed to rein in rebels among Spain's 17 regions, which enjoy varying levels of autonomy.Fears for Catalonia's economy have increased as uncertainty persists over the independence d*rive, with some 1,600 companies already having moved their legal headquarters out of the region.
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