60,000 mark the fifth anniversary of the 1-O, the self-determination referendum held on 2017 and deepens the ERc's sinking

The event organized in Barcelona this Saturday to mark the fifth anniversary of the 1-O, the self-determination referendum held on October 1st, 2017 was attended by 60,000 people. What was most evident was the vast divide separating the thousands of people who gathered in front of the Arc de Triomf in defence of the validity of the referendum, and Catalonia's Republican Left (ERC) political leadership that has abandoned the 1-O.​​

In fact the dismissal of vice president Jordi Puigneró (Junts) by president Pere Aragonès (ERC) only three weeks after the Diada demonstration from which the ERC leadership absented itself, is already clear. The first signs were given at the very start of the event, when it was recalled that the Spanish state's repression had, among other consequences, led to the situation of there being five people in exile who were unable to come personally to Barcelona. The names of Lluís Puig, Clara Ponsatí and Toni Comín, from the Junts space, received loud applause, and this multiplied when the name of Carles Puigdemont was read, prompting a shower of praise and chants of "president". Only one of the figures in exile was criticized: the name of the ERC general secretary, Marta Rovira, provoked jeers among the public.

The ERC space also could not avoid the crowd's derision, a few moments later, when senior ERC figure Carme Forcadell went on stage. During her speech, calls of "traitor" and "out" were heard among the public:  "Many of you are angry, disappointed and disillusioned. I understand that and I share it.", she said. But it 's too late. Her party is sinking day by day. 

Carles Puigdemont and the ANC get all the warmth

Carles Puigdemont, the president-in-exile, who spoke live via telematic means, was enthusiastically welcomed by an audience that, for long periods, remained silent listening to his words. A tranquility that was broken after several messages from Puigdemont, such as his "immense thanks" to the citizens who made the 1-O possible, his warning that those "delusional undertakers" should give up any hope that the people will forget about independence, and his defence that "there is no need to repeat" any referendum because the 2017 one is still valid, as opposed to the "clarity" proposal of the Catalan president, Pere Aragonès. Even his appeal for the unity of the independence movement was well received: "The only table to which we must chain ourselves is the dialogue table between the siblings of Junts, ERC, the CUP, Òmnium and the Assembly". Unlike the other speakers who spoke along these lines, Puigdemont was applauded. 
The Catalan National Assembly (ANC), as well, was welcomed with open arms. In her speech, Dolors Feliu saw how her strategy, marked by the desire to put an end to the dialogue table with the state and start a new democratic attack in the short term, was strongly applauded. Her criticism of the "immobility" of the parties was warmly received by the public, as well as her call to "open new paths". Thus, the ANC president returned to the threat of a early election and a civil list, bypassing the parties, if the Catalan government does not comply with its pro-independence mandate.

Appart from the Barcelona's event there were meetings all over Catalonia and a rally in Girona where hundreds burned the ERC's effigy portrait and a Spanish banner.

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Enough is enough: 15 City Councils in Northern Catalonia will fight to recognize the right of councilors to use Catalan

On Friday, it was announced that the Elna City Council would go to trial following the decision of the councilor plenum to modify the municipal regulations to recognize the right of councilors to use Catalan, as long as the interventions are fully translated into French. The Intermunicipal Union for the Promotion of Occitan and Catalan Languages ​​(SIOCCAT), that there are at least fifteen northern Catalan municipalities that will also introduce Catalan into the municipal regulations. If nothing else, there are Banys and Palaldà (Vallespir), Espirà de Conflent, Estagell (Rosselló), Formiguera (Capcir), la Menera (Vallespir), Tor de França (Fenolleda), Pesillà de la Ribera (Rosselló), Portvendres (Rossello), Ralleu (Conflent), Sant Andreu de Sureda (Rossello), Sureda (Rossello), Tarerac (Conflent), Trillà (Fenolleda) and Vingrau (Rossello). 

Some of these councils have already received a threatening letter from the prefect demanding that they back down, and, according to SIOCCAT sources, some councils have already given up. Rodrigue Furcy, prefect of the Department of the Eastern Pyrenees, justifies the ban on Catalan by adding that article 2 of the French constitution says that the language of the republic is French. He also argues that French courts have ruled several times that plenaries in a language other than French are illegal.

Nicolas Garcia, Elna's Mayor for the PCF

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International report concludes that the Spanish repression in Catalonia inspires dictatorships

A report by UNPO concludes that the Spanish repression in Catalonia inspires dictatorships. The 40-page report explains how lawfare and repression in Spain against Catalonia have inspired:

1. Charges of treason in Ghana against West Togoland separatists (intensifying from 2019).
2. The abuse in Algeria of counterterrorism to silence the self-determination of Cabilia (2021).
 3. The use in Pakistan of counterterrorism legislation against minorities (2020). 4. Russia's labeling of Crimean Tatars as extremists and terrorists (2019).
5. The suppresion in Turkey of Kurdish activists. (2020) 
6. The use of spy software in Iran against the Kurdish community.


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The Council for the Republic becomes the Council of the Republic

This Sunday, September 18, an in-person Plenary meeting of the Assembly of Representatives was held in Canet de Rosselló, Northern Catalonia (under French rule). Respecting the established Agenda, the General and Operating Regulations were debated and approved with 93 votes in favor.

Spokesman Pere Cardús spoke on behalf of the report that he has drawn up on the General and Operating Regulations of the Council for the Republic. His intervention has opened the process of debate and amendments. Cardús recalled that the Assembly of Representatives "does not aim to make codes per se but to make an independent State in the form of a Republic". Cardús explained that the Regulation "is a facilitating document, made for understanding and cooperation" and that it will help the Council "to understand us and not to watch over us".

The speaker explained that the Regulation is a text that must also facilitate "a system of understanding between the Government, Local Councils and the Assembly of Representatives" and that it must allow "to draw up a joint strategy for all the bodies of the Council for the Republic ". During the debate on the amendments, the speakers convinced the Government and ended up withdrawing the amendment on the name of the Council. So, the change in the nomenclature of the republican institution has been approved: the Council for the Republic is now called the Council of the Republic. The Government has asked for a special speaking turn to warn that this change will be, in logistical terms, progressive in the coming months.

32 new Local Councils become official once President Puigdemont has given them the Letter of Commitment

The legitimation steps for a Local Council, regulated in the Framework Document for the Impulse of "Local Councils for the Republic", are as follows:

- first, transversal people from a locality/village/district come together and create a driving group 

- afterwards, they are in charge of deploying the Local Council in their local area (networks, territory, local institutions...).

- once the Local Council is present in the locality, an open process is carried out with the citizens and a democratic board is chosen with the tools that the Council makes available to them. 

The local Councils for the Republic that have already signed the "Letter of Commitment" drawn up by the Council for the Republic, which determines, among other issues, the political objectives and purposes of the local Councils and their principles of operation, will receive it signed and in hand by the President of the Council, Carles Puigdemont, at this event.

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Anniversary of the infamous Decree against the Catalan identity of the genocidal Primo de Rivera prohibiting the Catalan flag or Catalan language with death penalty


"Sir: Of the evils that most demand urgent and severe remedy is the feeling, propaganda and separatist action that is being carried out by audacious minorities, who not because of being evil, but precisely because of being evil, offend the sentiment of the majority of Spaniards, especially those who live in the regions where such serious evil has manifested itself". This is the meager statement of reasons for the Decree entitled "La Represión del Separatismo" in reference to Catalanity signed by the genocidal dictator Miguel Primo de Rivera (father of the founder of Falange) on September 18, 1923. A piece of legislation that wanted to eradicate Catalan independence and which the historical archive of the BOE does not allow to see interactively.

The Decree promulgated just after the coup two days after the commemoration of the Day of the Eleventh of September 1923 that established the Military Junta as government in Spain, was designed to "purge before the virus that represents the the least confusion, the smallest misunderstanding in sentiments in which there is no need to allow them, and which no people or State conscious of its security and dignity admits or tolerates".

To do so, the decree established the death penalty for separatist "public resistance", correctional prison sentences and extremely high fines, of up to 5,000 pesetas at the time, for "the dissemination of separatist ideas through teaching, or the preaching of doctrines". As well to hoist flags that were not the Spanish one, therefore prohibiting the Senyera (Catalan flag) or prohibiting speaking in Catalan. After all, the Decree established military trials "against the unity of the homeland, when they tend to disintegrate it, reduce its strength and lower its concept, either by word, in writing, by the press or by any other mechanical or graphic means of advertising and dissemination, or for any other act or manifestation".

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The EU Comission denounces Spain: No rule of law as it is failing to comply the 61 % of the ECHR rulings

The Kingdom of Spain is failing to comply with the rulings of the ECHR, with 61% still pending, EU Comissioner for Justice, Didier Reynders reminds, and the average time of pending implementation is over three years. Spain is a deficient democracy where human rights don’t really matter.

The European Commissioner for Justice, Didier Reynders, in response to a question from Spanish MEPs, recalled that on January 1, 2022, Spain had 23 main judgments of the ECHR pending compliance. "On that date, the percentage of main judgments handed down during the last ten years and pending compliance in Spain was 61%, and the average period during which the judgments had been pending compliance was three years and one month", add.

Reynders recalls in his written response that compliance with the judgments of the Strasbourg Court, in particular with regard to the main judgments, is an important indicator of the functioning of the Rule of Law in a country, and that the report on the Rule of Law drawn up by the Commission has included this year for the first time an overview of the application of ECtHR judgments in each State.

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We're back: Massive political demonstration for Catalonia's Independence attended by 700,000 people

700,000 people gathered in the annual National Day pro-independence rally in Barcelona, according to the the organizing grassroots organization, ANC.  local police. Thus, the march was joined by 300,000 more people than last year, when the organizers estimated that 400,000 had marched in the streets. According to local police, the figure was 150,000, which is also higher than their calculations in 2021.

Every September 11, the attendance in the demonstration has been one of the key facts to know the level of engagement among Catalans over the independence campaign. The rally in 2014 marks the peak number of attendees, with 1.8 million, according to the local police, which stood for almost a quarter of the total population in the country. Yet, these numbers have been declining especially after the referendum and independence push in October 2017, with the pandemic also playing its role.

The rally began in Paral·lel avenue and ended in the Estació de França station, by the Ciutadella Park, where the Catalan parliament is located. The atmosphere was at all times cheerful and peaceful, with chants of independence, against governing parties, and some attendees supporting exiled president Carles Puigdemont. You can see some pictures of the rally here at the Catalan version of VilaWeb.

Independence or elections

When the event ended, ANC’s president Dolors Feliu demanded “independence or elections” to the two parties in cabinet, which are also favoring a split from Spain. During her speech, she said that 5 years after the 2017 independence referendum many people have run out of patience and she hinted at the creation of a new party, while many rally-goers spontaneously chanted “government, step down.”

Yesterday’s rally and Feliu’s ultimatum imply a move forward by the ANC in a delicate political moment, when ERC and Junts are negotiating a way not to derail the government agreement, although Junts is considering the possibility of leaving it. There is still a lot of legislation ahead, although next year there will be local and Spanish parliamentary elections, and a possible economic recession is looming and will shake the foundations of all political institutions.

President Aragonès did not attend the rally “because it is against [pro-independence] parties and not against Spain.” This is a major evidence that campaigners for a split with Spain are divided between those prioritizing talks with Madrid, including Aragonès, and those who say confrontation would be a much more effective way ahead. Indeed, the official manifesto for the protest, organized by grassroots organization ANC, criticizes the handling of the independence campaign by the parties leading it. It is the first time since 2015 that a Catalan president fails to attend the march.

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The United Nations’ (UN) Human Rights Committee: Spain violated political rights of Catalan national minority leaders

 The United Nations’ Human Rights Committee has stated that Spain “violated” the political rights of four formerly jailed Catalan leaders, convicted for their roles in organizing the 2017 referendum on independence.

The opinion was released on Wednesday and refers to the fact that former vice president Oriol Junqueras, together with former ministers Raül Romeva, Josep Rull and Jordi Turull were stripped as MPs before having been convicted in October 2019.

During their pretrial detention, the four former Parliament members brought their case to the Committee, alleging that their suspension from public duties, prior to any conviction, violated their political rights under Article 25 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. In October 2019, the four of them were convicted of sedition, a crime that does not include the element of violence, as opposed to rebellion, and their suspensions were lifted.

Taking note that the four complainants had urged the public to remain strictly peaceful, the Committee considered that the decision to charge them with the crime of rebellion, which led to their automatic suspension prior to a conviction, was not foreseeable and therefore not based on reasonable and objective grounds provided for by law.

“The Committee took an important step in affirming that the safeguards against the restrictions of political rights must be applied more rigorously if these restrictions occur prior to, rather than after, a conviction for an offence,” said Committee member Hélène Tigroudja. “The decision to suspend elected officials should rely on clear and foreseeable laws which establish reasonable and objective grounds for the restriction of the political rights, and must be applied based on an individualized assessment. Such an approach and safeguards are the best way to ensure respect for institutions and to promote the rule of law in a democratic society,” she added.

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Hundreds of people gather in Folgueroles and burn Spanish flags

The event was called by the Civil Disobedience movement and consisted mainly of fun events (theatre, debates, music with Musicians for Freedom). Catalans for Independence, the Committees for the Defense of the Republic of Osona and Action for Independence have participated in the events. Among them some hooded men have entered the town hall where they have unfurled a banner.

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Thousands rally to live fully in Catalan language in Majorca, València and Barcelona

One hundred people have claimed this Saturday, April 2, in Palma, the "right to live in Catalan." All in the framework of the mobilization organized by 17 entities. This was explained by Carles Cabrera, the Secretary of Linguistic Normalization of the STEI Intersindical, one of the 17 entities that joined the mobilization. In statements to the media, he stated that "this Saturday's rally, organized by Enllaçats per la Llengua, in all Catalan-speaking territories, aims to claim the normality of this language in the Balearic Islands in order to live fully in Catalan."

In Barcelona a crowd of thousands people rallied against the political agreement to reform the Language Policy Act. This is the agreement signed by PSOE, ERC, JxCat and En Comú Podem, which states that Spanish "is used in the terms set by the language projects of each center" and from which JxCat ended up being demarcated. The protest began in Plaça de Sant Jaume and advanced through the center of the Catalan capital to the gates of Parliament, in the Ciutadella park. A police cordon guarding the building was waiting for them there.

First there was a rally, convened by the platform Enllaçats per la Llengua under the slogan ‘Enough’ and demanding to live fully in Catalan. After the reading of the manifesto, the demonstration convened by USTEC, COS, Intersindical, the Federated Associations of Families and Students of Catalonia (aFFaC) and the Student Union of the Catalan Countries (SEPC) . Trade unions (USTEC-STEs, Intersindical, CGT and COS), students (SEPC), families (aFFaC), with the support of organizations (ANC, Omnium) and platforms in defense of the language (CAL, Platform for the Language), have promoted the demonstration this Saturday afternoon in the center of Barcelona in defense of the Catalan school model and against the political agreement signed by ERC, Junts, PSC and Comuns which they consider puts an end to language immersion.

In València, the mobilization had the support of Decidim, ACPV, STEPV, Plataforma per la llengua, Juga en Valencià, COS and Escola Valenciana and was joined by more than a hundred people.

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'Collabo Government' rally held in front of the HQ of the autonomous government


The Catalans for Independence formation, created by former members of the ANC leadership, dissatisfied with the mandate of Elisenda Paluzie, gathered a hundred people yesterday in front of the Palau de la Generalitat, in a rally led by the slogan “we will not vote us again ”. During the event, a manifesto was read in which the group declares that they feel cheated by the "15-M scammers", referring to the City Council, and by the "October 1 scammers , referring to the Generalitat (Catalan autonomous government). "We are not in rebellion, but we no longer recognize you, and that is why we will not vote for you again," they said, addressing the current pro-independence deputies. The formation, created in 2021, aims to "bring together pro-independence activists who are not willing to give up the October 1 mandate or wait for future generations to implement it."

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A dozen of ERC party headquarters defaced as Spanish collaborationists and "to betray independence"

The Committee for the Defense of the Republic - Direct Action has claimed that it has painted on the facade of several ERC headquarters, as well as some of Junts and the CUP in various localities, with the inscription "Consulate of Spain" to denounce the which considers the inaction of the parties in resuming the independence process. The CDR-Acció Directa has published on the web how the graffiti was done in various towns, such as Mollerussa, Alcarràs, Terrassa, Balaguer, Barcelona, ​​Rubí, Sant Cugat del Vallès and Vic. "If you continue to manage autonomy, you will face us. If you continue to betray independence, we will continue to point to yours. Today we made official what we all knew: new consulates in the territory ", they pointed out on the network. In a manifesto published a year ago, the CDR-Acció Directa criticized the action of the pro-independence parties, assuring that they were trying to "seek demobilization", and announced that it would take action in protest.

Meanwhile, pro-independence parties in addition to the PSC and the commons are now waiting to see if they will change the language policy law. If last Thursday the PSC, ERC, Junts i comuns convincingly presented an agreement to incorporate Spanish as a language for school use, today this agreement has the brakes on. The widespread rejection of civil society on Thursday evening led to Junts withdrawing from this agreement, while the other three groups called on those of Carles Puigdemont not to deviate from the consensus reached by more than 100 deputies. The amendment to the Language Policy Act was due to begin debating in the plenary next week, the groups said, but it has no date at the moment, although it is likely to be addressed in the plenary session of the April 28th.
for Taboola

This was explained by parliamentary sources after the Bureau and the Board of Spokespersons met this week. They say they have set the agenda for next week's plenary, which will only last two days because there are "few motions", and that this bill will not be addressed to change the rules. These sources have detailed that there is no date at the moment and that the decision not to put it in the next plenary session has been an agreement of the groups. In addition, the CUP has asked to unilaterally set its proposal to amend the LEC for next week’s plenary session, which calls for only Catalan to be recognized in schools, but the groups have rejected it.

On the other hand, ninety personalities have signed a manifesto against the controversial language agreement at school, arguing that “it cannot be approved because it constitutes a threatening setback for the future of the language in an area that is key to normalizing -the". A més, “la incorporació explícita de la vehicularitat del castellà en una llei catalana representaria un pas enrere que el català no es pot permetre en la situació de feblesa actual, accentuada entre la població més jove”, afegeix. Clara Ponsatí, Elisenda Paluzie, Quim Torra and Lluís Llach are some of the personalities who have supported the text released this week. The manifesto ‘Defensem l'escola en català’ explains that “this waiver, apart from being dangerous, would be sterile and gratuitous, and would not serve to respond to the judicial requirements of the TSJC ruling”. "We already know, as we have seen in the Valencian Country, that the courts, based on lawsuits from public and private bodies that have not stopped, would continue to attack the school in Catalan under any pretext," he recalls. Therefore, he insists that "the government cannot give in to the legal challenge that, without any pedagogical criteria, seeks to overthrow a model that promotes social cohesion and has the support of the vast majority of society." "In fact, it gave way when in 2020, in the negotiation of the Celaá Law with the government of Pedro Sánchez, it did not demand that the Spanish government withdraw the appeal that has ended up giving rise to this sentence," he said.

The CDR-AD was born on St. George's Day 2021. In a statement, the new group, called CDR Direct Action, explained that it includes the legacy of all those who have fought for independence, especially the courage of all those retaliated against. , to take a walk on the political stage from the street. "In this context, between the demobilization sought, the Offec of Spain and the so-empty and embarrassing words of Catalan parties we are born the Defense Committee of the Republic - Direct Action," says the statement.

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Amnesty International Report 2021/22 denounces that Spanish Human rights violations continue against Catalan national minority

Amnesty International Annual Report 2021/22 continues to denounce that Human rights violations in Spain continue, especially in Catalonia "Investigations into allegations of unlawful use of force by law enforcement officials during the Oct 2017 protests in Catalonia remained open". Catalan pro-independence grassroots leaders"spent almost four years in detention, following an unjust conviction on sedition charges in connection w/ peaceful protests and the 2017 referendum on Catalan independence". President in exile and MEPCarlesPuigdemont was arrested in Sardinia following illegal procedures by the Spanish judiciary, and subsequently released. Spain's GagLaw remains in effect 6 yrs after its implementation, despite promises of change by the current Spanish government. Human rights violations in Spain continue, and the heirs of Francoism keep their impunity in a so-called "democracy".

Link to the report

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