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Jul 22, 8:18 AM EDT

Poll shows more Catalans favor independence from Spain

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MADRID (AP) -- A Catalan government opinion poll says more people in Spain's northeastern region favor independence from Spain but they still fall short of a majority.

The Opinion Studies Center poll released Friday said 47.7 percent of those quizzed support secession while 42.4 percent reject it. The remainder did not know or did not answer. The center*s last poll in March showed 45.5 percent rejected independence while 45.3 percent favored it.

The survey interviewed 1,500 people in person June 28-July 13 and has a margin of error of 2.5 percent.

Catalonia, whose capital is Barcelona, represents a fifth of Spain's 1.1-trillion euro ($1.2 trillion) GDP. Pro-independence groups there won the most seats in 2015 regional elections but failed to get a majority of the popular vote.

The Spanish government has ruled out independence.

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