Catalan separatist leader refuses to step down

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Catalan separatist leader Carles Puigdemont refused to step down as the region’s president Saturday, hours after the Spanish government fired him. Puigdemont, who leads Catalonia’s bid for independence, urged followers to oppose Madrid’s direct rule and decried the decision to fire him and take over the region’s government as “aggression.” In a televised statement, Puigdemont…