9
   

Catalonia wants out; Spain says no

 
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Sat 13 Feb, 2021 08:35 am
The Catalan nationalists are in crisis ahead of tomorrow's regional elections.

The unsuccessful fight for a separate republic has worn down the supporters. Only 44.5 percent of Catalans are currently in favour of a separate state. Many of them are frustrated because their leaders promised rapid independence for years - and then failed to deliver.

In the election, the separatists might just manage a majority despite the rise of the socialists. But what they would do with power they themselves do not know. The left-wing republicans are counting on negotiations with Madrid, the more radical camp around Puigdemont and Sànchez on confrontation.

Sunday's vote is therefore a landmark. The party that prevails on Sunday will want to determine the course of the next few years. At the heart of the matter is one question: do the separatists de-escalate the conflict with Madrid - or do they take another run at it?

Six key questions for the future of Catalonia that the February 14 election will answer

Election who’s who: parties, powerholders, and potential presidents

Only a fraction of Catalans living abroad will vote on February 14

Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Sun 14 Feb, 2021 10:33 pm
@Walter Hinteler,
Pro-independence parties retained a majority in the 135-member chamber on a day that saw a record low turnout of 53.55%. The anti-capitalist CUP won 6.68% of the vote, surging from 4 seats to 9, meaning a total of 74 MPs in favor of a Catalan republic, 4 more than in 2017.

The far-right Vox Party will enter Catalonia's regional parliament for the first time, winning 11 seats. The conservative People's Party is only expected to receive three seats.
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Feb, 2021 01:33 pm
@Walter Hinteler,
Catalonia’s regional elections told two stories. The headline is the Socialists (PSC) won the most votes - a win for the Spanish Prime Minister. However, the pro-Independence parties secured over 50% of the vote and seats - up from 2017.

https://i.imgur.com/imYRWTC.jpg
(Map by @mcimaps)

Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Tue 9 Mar, 2021 07:18 am
@Walter Hinteler,
The European parliament has voted to lift the immunity of the former Catalan president Carles Puigdemont and two of his ministers, taking them a step closer to extradition and prosecution in Spain.

MEPs voted by 400 to 248 with 45 abstentions in the case of Puigdemont and 404 to 247 with 42 abstentions regarding Antoni Comín and Clara Ponsatí, respectively the former health and education ministers in Puigdemont’s government.
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Tue 9 Mar, 2021 11:51 am
@Walter Hinteler,
There are formal reasons why the Parliament decided to lift the immunity:the criminal proceedings began before the three were elected to the European Parliament and the charges were "clearly unrelated" to their activities as MEPs, the decisions say.
Puigdemont said on Tuesday that this was "a sad day" for the European Parliament: "This is a clear case of political persecution." His lawyers are considering appealing the decision to the European Court of Justice.

However, the trio per se has a good chance of not being extradited:
a Brussels appeals court ruled two months ago that Lluís Puig - another former member of the Catalan regional government - does not have to be extradited. Belgian prosecutors decided not to challenge the ruling, which means Spain's request is likely to be finally rejected. The judges argued that because of the heated atmosphere, the presumption of innocence was in danger.
So it is to be expected that this will also happen here.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Fri 21 May, 2021 10:51 am
Moderate separatist Pere Aragones named new leader
Quote:
Harvard-educated lawyer Pere Aragones pledged to keep pushing for an independent Catalonia, pointing to Scotland's 2014 referendum approved by the UK as a positive example.

After months of squabbling between Catalan separatist parties, Catalonia lawmakers on Friday endorsed a new government led by leftist Pere Aragones.

The 38-year-old lawyer called for "immediately" restarting independence talks with Madrid, which have been suspended due to the pandemic. At the same time, he signaled a more moderate course than his predecessors.

"I want us to be like Scotland. And I would like it if the Spanish state behaved like Britain did in 2014," Aragones said.

The London-approved independence vote ended with Scotland choosing to stay in the United Kingdom, although calls for another referendum have since grown louder, primarily because of Brexit.

Who is Pere Aragones?
The new Catalan president comes from a family of industrialists and hotel owners. He joined the Republican Left of Catalonia (ERC) party as a teenager and became a regional lawmaker at the age of 24, moving into government six years ago. Aragones also completed a part of his education at Harvard University.

He is the most senior ERC leader who is not in jail over the region's unilateral independence bid in 2017. On Monday, Aragones called for amnesty for Catalan leaders who have been jailed or exiled over the dispute.

However, the new Catalan president said he would not reassert the independence claim until there was more support among the voters. The wealthy region of over 7.5 million people remains almost equally split on the issue in opinion polls. The ERC placed second behind a pro-union Socialist party in the February election, but separatist groups combined still managed to secure an overall majority.

How did Madrid react?
The Spanish government, led by Pedro Sanchez, remains firmly opposed to both the referendum and the amnesty for separatist leaders. On Friday, Sanchez congratulated Aragones and pledged to work together reconciliation between Catalonia and the rest of Spain.

"Let's make it possible," Sanchez said on Twitter.
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Jun, 2021 10:39 pm
@Walter Hinteler,
Rightwing parties condemn Spain's prime minister’s call to work for ‘co-existence’ with separatists.
Spain’s right unites in fury as PM considers Catalan pardons
Quote:
On Sunday thousands of people, among them the leaders of the three parties on Spain’s right, will once again gather in the Madrid square that boasts the world’s largest Spanish flag to protest against the Socialist-led government’s handling of the Catalan independence crisis.
[...]
The question of pardoning the Catalan leaders remains deeply divisive in Spain, a fact not lost on opposition parties and many people in Sánchez’s Spanish Socialist Workers party (PSOE). A recent poll for El Mundo found that 61% of those surveyed did not agree with pardoning them, while 29.5% backed it.

Although the government will have the final say, Spain’s supreme court issued a non-binding report opposing the pardons last month, saying the sentences handed out were appropriate and noting those convicted had not shown “the slightest evidence or faintest hint of contrition”.

Sánchez, however, insists the pardons could be the best way to cool enduring tensions and move towards a political solution to the territorial impasse. “I do understand that there will be people who have objections to the decision the government might make – especially after the events of 2017,” the prime minister said on Wednesday. “But I ask them to put their trust in us because we need to work on coexistence … Spanish society needs to move from a bad past to a better future – and that will require magnanimity.”
... ... ...
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Jun, 2021 10:19 am
@Walter Hinteler,
Spain has pardoned the 9 Catalan separatist leaders. PM Sanchez said this is the first step in resolving the crisis between Madrid and Catalonia.
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Jul, 2021 01:39 pm
@Walter Hinteler,
Former Catalan President Carles Puigdemont, along with two separatist allies, could now be extradited to Spain to face criminal charges.

EU court strips ex-Catalan leader of immunity
0 Replies
 
InfraBlue
 
  1  
Reply Thu 16 Sep, 2021 09:54 am
In Bid to End Secession Dispute, Spain Tries Talking With Catalonia

Quote:
Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez of Spain met with the leader of Catalonia in an attempt to resolve the fate of the region.

MADRID — Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez of Spain on Wednesday held a long-awaited meeting with his regional counterpart in Catalonia to seek an end to Spain’s territorial conflict, four years after a failed Catalan secession attempt and 18 months after a first round of negotiations was abruptly curtailed by the coronavirus pandemic.

Analysts warned that the negotiations would also be fraught with stumbling blocks. While Mr. Aragonès, a moderate independence politician, took office this year promising a dialogue, he has faced skepticism from Catalonia’s hard-line parties.

. . .

“The biggest obstacle will be the divisions within the independence parties,” said José Ignacio Torreblanca, a politics professor at the National Distance Education University in Madrid.

. . .

After an election in February, Mr. Aragonès took office as the new regional leader. He still seeks independence, but pledged to de-escalate the conflict with Spain through talks. Then in June, Mr. Sánchez gave pardons to the nine independence activists who had been given sentences for sedition.

In an interview after the talks, Mr. Aragonès said his position boiled down to two main goals: a general amnesty for independence leaders he said had been accused of crimes related to their political actions; and holding a new referendum that would be negotiated with the Spanish government, a proposal Mr. Sánchez so far has rejected as unconstitutional.

. . .

Much as in Scotland, there are not just divisions in Catalonia over whether independence should be pursued but also between the parties seeking independence. The issue has also shown the divide between residents of Catalonia’s capital and tourism hub, Barcelona, and smaller towns that have helped separatists keep control of the regional parliament since 2015.

. . .

[In regard to the divisions within the independence parties, me] The feuding between Esquerra Republicana and Together for Catalonia shows “that there is now a very significant divide between two parties that had managed at least to share the same broad vision and agenda until 2017,” said Lluís Orriols, a politics professor at Carlos III University in Madrid.

In contrast to Together for Catalonia, he said, Esquerra Republicana has abandoned the idea that independence could be achieved unilaterally.

For Mr. Sánchez, on the other hand, the return to the negotiating table presents two opportunities in the short term, Mr. Orriols said: “pacifying what has long been a hostile climate in Catalonia and at least avoiding that the conflict returns to the streets.”

more. . .


It's difficult to believe that drive for independence is driven by just half of the Catalonian population. One would think that at least 60%, and probably more, of the population would be required to effect demands for independence.

Because of the hard-line response to the independence movement by the government, and the obdurateness of the hard-line movement leaders, the issue has gone beyond the original cause of the drive for independence, the distribution of tax revenues, that isn't even mentioned anymore in regard to the independence issue.
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Thu 16 Sep, 2021 11:07 am
@InfraBlue,
InfraBlue wrote:
It's difficult to believe that drive for independence is driven by just half of the Catalonian population. One would think that at least 60%, and probably more, of the population would be required to effect demands for independence.

Because of the hard-line response to the independence movement by the government, and the obdurateness of the hard-line movement leaders, the issue has gone beyond the original cause of the drive for independence, the distribution of tax revenues, that isn't even mentioned anymore in regard to the independence issue.

In any of those (European) regions searching for independence, the situation is quite similar, see e.g. Scotland as mentioned, or Walloon, or the Basque region.

Catalonia, however, even has got less basic fiscal autonomy enjoyed by the Basque Autonomous Community - I don't think that that's forgotten.
Common complaints are centred around lengthy waiting times for healthcare, poor infrastructure, and expensive toll roads. This is despite the fact that Catalonia's economy is around the same size of Portugal's and is only fractionally smaller than Madrid's.

Spanish autonomous regions do not reap the same policy powers as federal units such as the German states ("Länder").
izzythepush
 
  2  
Reply Thu 16 Sep, 2021 11:10 am
@Walter Hinteler,
Scotland has a pod case though, membership of the EU was a key consideration in the referendum.

Then they had Brexit forced upon them along with the biggest joke of a prime minister in history.
0 Replies
 
InfraBlue
 
  1  
Reply Thu 16 Sep, 2021 04:32 pm
@Walter Hinteler,
Thank you for that insight, Walter.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Thu 23 Sep, 2021 10:34 pm
Carles Puigdemont was arrested on a European arrest warrant (his immunity as an MEP had been lifted) in Sardinia, Italy, where he was attending a Catalan folk festival.

This should certainly lead to new trouble or even unrest.
Just last week, Spain’s prime minister, Pedro Sánchez, met with his regional counterpart, Pere Aragonès, in Barcelona to discuss the fate of the restive region.

Among Aragonès’s demands is a call for a general amnesty for those jailed or facing charges related to the 2017 independence attempt. At the top of the list for many is Puigdemont.

NYT: Catalan Separatist Leader, Carles Puigdemont, Is Arrested in Italy
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Fri 24 Sep, 2021 11:03 am
@Walter Hinteler,
The former Catalan regional president Carles Puigdemont is free. The politician had been detained in Sardinia on Thursday evening. This measure has now been revoked by the competent court, as Puigdemont's lawyer Gonzalo Boye told SPIEGEL. (spiegel-online [in German])

According to Spanish media reports, Judge Plinia Azzena emphasised that Puigdemont's arrest was legal. However, she said it was not necessary to keep him in prison or impose house arrest. "I am fine," Puigdemont told reporters after leaving prison. (Agenzia EFE)

It has not yet been decided whether the Italian judiciary will transfer Puigdemont to Spain. Spanish media initially reported that the politician had assured the judge that he would remain in Sardinia until the decision was made.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Apr, 2022 10:33 pm
A new report suggests that the Spanish government used the controversial Pegasus software to monitor the phones of dozens of Catalan independence figures.

Catalan independence leaders accuse Spain of mass surveillance campaign
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Wed 20 Apr, 2022 11:04 am
@Walter Hinteler,
In this situation, it is to the credit of Catalonia's regional president Pere Aragonès that he is not drooling for reparations, but is objectively demanding clarification from the Spanish government.

This demand is legitimate. Clarification is absolutely necessary if the propagandists of the old enemy image are not to gain new support.
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 May, 2022 11:00 am
@Walter Hinteler,
In the spying affair in Spain, the CNI secret service has admitted to monitoring the telephones of 18 Catalan separatists, including regional president Pere Aragonès. For each of these individual cases, CNI head Paz Esteban had presented a judicial authorisation in a parliamentary control commission, the newspaper "El País" reported.

Esteban had not taken responsibility for the rest of the 63 spied separatists and persons from their environment. The left Catalan party ERC has questioned its support for the Sánchez government because of the affair. It is calling for a commission of enquiry.

El País: La directora del CNI confirma el espionaje legal y autorizado a 18 independentistas, incluido Pere Aragonès
0 Replies
 
 

Related Topics

I Will Vote No More - Perhaps Forever - Discussion by edgarblythe
Your first Presidential ballot - Discussion by jespah
2018 midterms - Discussion by Lash
Who to vote for - Question by dalehileman
Pick the best motto - Question by S4INTY
Ron Paul 2012 - Discussion by Krumple
I'll vote for you. And you. And you. - Discussion by jespah
 
Copyright © 2022 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.03 seconds on 05/24/2022 at 10:37:04