Ben Emmerson: the Catalan independence movement is "born of the struggle to overcome the legacy of Francoism"

British lawyer Ben Emmerson, a member of the international defense of pro-independence prisoners, has stated that the Catalan independence movement is essentially a liberal anti-fascist movement that is "born of the struggle to overcome the legacy of Francoism." in The Hague, the Netherlands, at an international legal conference on self-determination within the European Union, organized by the ANC (Catalan National Assembly) in the Netherlands on Friday. For the lawyer, the Catalan question does not revolve around a discussion of nationalisms, it is "a real struggle to consolidate a democratic and liberal system of values in the face of a deep state that has allowed Franco's values to be perpetuated."

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Spanish Public debt reaches its second highest historical figure

The debt of all public administrations increased by 7,027 million euros in September. It reached 1.207 billion euros and is around 98% of GDP. It is the second largest data after the historical maximum recorded last June (1.210 billion), as published by the Bank of Spain on Friday. Specific, public debt increased 0.58% in September compared to the previous month, but rebounded 2.5% compared to the same month last year, rising to 29,323 million euros in the last year.

The ratio of debt to GDP would have been around 97.94% of GDP last September. This figure exceeds the debt target for the whole of the year by two percentage points, located at 95.9% of GDP, contained in the 2020 Budget Plan that the Government sent to Brussels in October.

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Clara Ponsatí, Together for Catalonia MEP: "If there is to be independence there is to be rupture"

"There is no escape, if there is to be independence there is to be rupture, and how this is structured is something that political forces do not know how to deal with, that is why there is this fragmentation." 

The MEP Clara Ponsatí (Together for Catalonia) considers that the fragmentation experienced by independence "is due to a crisis of political offers". Ponsatí considers that "an important part" of the politicians who came to 1-O "feel overwhelmed" and "are accepting" that now independence cannot be. "Those who are saying that it can be, so far have not explained how," she said.

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Popular Unity Candidacy simultaneous rallies yesterday: "this crisis will not be paid by the working class"

In several rallies called by the Popular Unity Candidacy (Candidatura d'Unitat Popular, CUP) as well as sectorial groups as Alerta Solidària, Arran, COS, Endavant and SEPC, yesterday called for "urgent" measures to combat the crisis and demanded "that the rich pay for it." There were several simultaneous rallies all over Catalonia. The convening organizations have protested the management being done by the administrations and have appealed to the self-management of support networks and movements to move towards “another way of life”.

"We know that the way out is through another way of living that we will achieve through popular self-organization," CUP MP Maria Sirvent said to the media. She also denounced that the effects of the 2008 crisis are still being suffered and that they are "fed up with cuts and precariousness". "We are clear that this crisis will not be paid for by the working class," she concluded. 

Among the measures demanded by the organizations and which they have collected in a manifesto are to put all private healthcare and health resources under public control, free public transport or the suspension of evictions and payments of rents and mortgages. They also propose the expropriation of empty homes in the hands of large landlords and free access to electricity, water, gas and telecommunications for the duration of the crisis through public control of essential service companies to ensure this, as well as the return of the bank bailout and a ‘covid fee’. 

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Catalan MEP and academic, Clara Ponsatí, launches 'The Case of the Catalans: Why So Many Catalans No Longer Want to Be Part of Spain'

The pro-independence Catalan MEP (Together for Catalonia) and academic, Clara Ponsatí, is presenting a new collective work on the subject: under the title The Case of the Catalans: Why So Many Catalans No Longer Want to Be Part of Spain, it reviews the evolution of the Catalan conflict from different points of view, from the historical background to the current political, economic and legal situation.

The book is to be launched this Tuesday via a videoconference connection between Edinburgh and Brussels, in which Ponsatí, editor of the work, and Scottish National Party politician and journalist George Kerevan will take part. The pair will talk about the Catalan political conflict and will take questions from those attending the event, which can be followed online.

Together with Ponsatí, six Catalan academics took part in this work: Carles Boix, of Princeton;Enriqueta Aragonès, of Barcelona's UAB; Albert Carreras and Xavier Quadras, from U. Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona; and Antoni Abat of the University of Copenhagen.

The title of the book is, like some elements of the issue, centuries old. The phrase "The Case of the Catalans" was used by the European powers in discussions on the political fate of Catalonia under the Peace of Utrecht (1712-1714) which ended the War of the Spanish Succession. As the book notes, England had allied with the Catalans on the side of the Habsburg's pretender to the Spanish throne, but eventually signed the Treaty of Utrecht under which it abandoned the war, in exchange for Gibraltar and Menorca and access to the Spanish slave market. "The abandoned Catalans continued to fight but were defeated by Bourbon troops after the dramatic siege of Barcelona in 1714," recalls a short frontispiece. It's an episode from Catalan History 101. However, it consumes barely a few pages of what is a wide-ranging and up-to-date work.

To buy the book


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The Speaker of the Spanish Parliament removes the word to Galician and Catalan MPs speaking their languages

The president of the Spanish Parliament, Meritxell Batet (PSOE, Spanish Socialist), has removed the word today to CUP MP Albert Botran and the Galician BNG MP, Néstor Rego, to use the both Catalan and Galician respectively in defending their stance a non-law proposal that sought to urge the Spanish government to guarantee "the right to study exclusively in Spanish."

In the case of Botran, Batet has asked him four times to comply with the regulations and speak in Spanish, but the anti-capitalist deputy has refused. Arriving at the rostrum, the president of the chamber told him, "You must use the common language of this house and to which we owe it by regulation." Botran continued reporting in Catalan "Spanish linguistic nationalism" far right Vox and Batet removed the word to the deputy Free People party. Censorship and language supremacism of the Spanish majority against the minorities.

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21 Catalan minority people detained today for their pro independence ideology

Spain is a Fascist state. Spain is not a democracy but an authoritarian beast harrasing, day by day, the Catalan minority. The Spanish paramilitary police (guardia civil), has caused unrest amongst the movement's sympathizers, with many calling for an end to "repression." A historian, Josep Lluís Alay, a editor, Oriol Soler, an sportsman Xavier Vinyals of a lobby in favor of Catalan national sports teams (banned by Spain unlike the United Kingdom) are three of the 21 civilians kidnapped by a military corps well known by tortures, rapes and corruption. The Spanish move is ludicrous.  The detainees are accused of Catalan independence ideas and phantom relations with Julian Assange, Edward Snowden and the Russian government. 

In an operation led by a Spanish inquisition court, searches in 31 spots across Catalonia and 21 detentions were being performed for pro-independence activities and protests. The Catalan President in Exile and MEP Carles Puigdemont, who was Catalonia's president at the time of the 2017 independence bid, swiftly criticized the investigation carried out by the Spanish Guardia Civil. "Spain's Guardia Civil just detained my head of office in Barcelona, Josep Alay, together with a dozen of other people linked with the pro-independence movement. They must be immediately released. Acting against political dissidents is a huge violation of fundamental rights." The Catalan Government as well as grassroots movements have protestes in front of the Catalan autonomous government HQ against the Spanish repression towards the Catalan minority.

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Up to 87% of the membership of the Catalan Nationalist Youth) voted to support the candidacy of Together for Catalonia (JNC)

Up to 87% of the membership of the Joventut Nacionalista de Catalunya (JNC, Catalan Nationalist Youth) voted to support the candidacy of Junts per Catalunya (JxCat, Together for Catalonia) according to a public consultation on 23 October. Following the decision, talks will begin to establish a collaboration agreement after breaking with the PDeCAT.

In this regard, they have also announced the opening of "a process of dialogue with JxCat to establish a collaboration agreement that will allow the JNC to become its reference youth organization in the February 14 elections."

This result comes a week after the youth organization approved breaking relations with the PDeCAT, following the distance of Bonvehí's party with JxCat.

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New poll predicts the growth of Catalan pro independence parties majority from 70 to 73 MPs

A new CEO poll published today predicts the growth of Catalan pro independence parties majority from 70 to 73 MPs. The Leftist ERC could win Catalan elections with 35-36 seats, ahead of centrist Together for Catalonia (JxCat) with 31-32, and the pro-independence majority in the chamber would grow as the Poll also suggests that the far left Candidacy for Popular Unity (CUP) could grow from four to 6-7 MPs. In November 2018 the CEO poll gave 36-38 to ERC, 23-24 to JxCat and 10-11 to CUP. 

The stronger Spanish annexionist party C'anos would suffer a huge lose from 36 to 16-17 MPs. It would suppose a stronger division in the pro Spanish parties with some gains for the Socialists (from 17 o 24), Spanish right (4 to 7) and the far right with 4-6 when it had no MPs in 2017.
Moreover th he 'yes' to the independence of Catalonia advances according to the CEO (Opinion Studies Center) : Proponents of secession have risen 3.5 points in the last quarter, while detractors have lost 4 points.

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The Spanish Supreme Court prohibits Catalan among Catalan-speaking administrations

The Spanish Supreme Court prohibits Catalan among Catalan-speaking administrations in a ruling of 2020/10/21. The Spanish Inquisition Court has ratified the ban on the use of Catalan exclusively in communications between the Generalitat Valenciana and the administrations of Catalonia and the Balearic Islands. The high court has rejected the incidents of nullity presented in July by the Advocacy of the Generalitat Valenciana and a union against the sentence that the same court issued in June. Then the articles of the norm of linguistic uses of the Valencian Generalitat that regulate how the Valencian government must communicate institutionally with the autonomies of the same linguistic field, Catalonia and the Balearics. And it endorsed a previous sentence of the Superior Court of Valencian Justice, that considered that the Valencian government does not have competitions at the time of deciding in which language it communicates with the other communities. This is an exclusive competence of the State, enshrined in the law on common administrative procedure of public administrations (LPAC).

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Catalan National Assembly asks the European Union to protect the rights of Spain's Catalan minority

The Catalan National Assembly (ANC) has appealed to the president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, to protect the rights of the "Catalan minority" within Spain. 

In a letter signed by ANC president Elisenda Paluzie​, the pro-independence organization has asked the European institutions to revise the chapter on Spain in the recently-published Rule of Law in Europe 2020 report, which failed to include the input from 14 Catalan civil society institutions - ranging from the Catalan Ombudsman to the ANC itself. The Assembly asserts that the European Commission's report is incomplete without including the allegations of "human rights violations" by the state against Catalonia - such as the rights to freedom of expression, assembly and association, and that of self-determination.

The omission of this information by the EU was a "bitter disappointment", says the ANC, given that other international bodies have addressed it: for the Universal Periodic Review of the United Nations on human rights in Spain (in January 2020) contributions from the Assembly and other Catalan organizations were taken into account in the reports by the UN Human Rights Council, with over 110 countries raising questions and recommendations on the situation of human rights in Spain.

The letter also points out that the UN Special Rapporteur on Minorities, Fernand de Varennes, said in March 2020 that the Spanish state "has a legal obligation to protect the rights of the Catalan minority, especially with regard to freedom of expression, including political expression, as well as freedom of assembly and association, fundamental rights and participation in public life."

In response, however, the Spanish state "has not addressed" any of these recommendations. Spain's "lack of respect for the rule of law" is only matched by its tendency to mention it as much as possible, asserts the letter. "The accountability of EU member states rests on supranational institutions such as the European Commission, and European citizens need to know that their representation is taken into account if they are to trust these institutions," the ANC emphasizes.

The letter also notes that four anniversaries falling this week underline the "deterioration of the human rights situation" in Spain, especially as it affects Catalans: the 2019 court verdict sentencing nine Catalan leaders to jail for sedition; also in 2019, the jailing of Spanish activist Dani Gallardo for protesting in Madrid against the court decisions; the 2017 jailing of activists Jordi Cuixart and Jordi Sànchez, denounced as arbitrary by a UN Working Group; and the 1940 execution by the Franco regime of Catalan president Lluís Companys, for which Spain has never apologized.

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Spanish colonial forces confronted by Catalan youth a year after the sentence against Catalan grassroots activists and politicians

In Plaça Catalunya, the colonial police arrested a boy and left another unconscious after beating him. Spanish agents have also entered the metro to persecute young people. A year after the sentence that sentenced Catalan politicians and activists to more than a century in prison and the first mobilizations of rejection, the CDR (Committees for the Defense of the Republic) have returned to Plaça Urquinaona in Barcelona this Wednesday. The crowd advanced along the Via Laietana, to the Spanish Colonial Police Headquarters, amid a strong police deployment. After reaching Colom, they climbed the Rambla. There, the body has warned of an "imminent" intervention by throwing glass bottles at officers, burning some containers and throwing street pots on the street to form barricades against police charges.

Along the Via Laietana, the march was bravely entertained with the Spanish flags that parapolice elements had hung on the streetlights two days before. A protester has climbed into one of the lights to rip off a Spanish flag and the rest of the protesters have celebrated the action with applause and shouts of "out, out, the Spanish flag." The first drop was followed by many more: the CDRs have been tearing up the rest of the Spanish flags placed on Monday. One of the flags ended up burning on the sidewalk amid applause.

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Leftist Independentists tribute to the President Companys, shot by Spain, in his birthplace


Independentistes d'Esquerres (Leftist Independentists) made a floral offering yesterday at the monument to Lluís Companys in El Tarròs, a few days before the 80th anniversary of his "ignominious assassination" by "Franco's coup plotters", they explained. The event was attended by the president of the Independentistas d'Esquerres, Pep Andreu; the retaliated clown Jordi Pesarrodona; the deputy Eusebi Campdepadrós, and the historian Tomàs Callau.

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The last 3 presidents of Catalonia denounced in a joint appearance in Perpignan the Spanish repression

The last three presidents of Catalonia, Artur Mas, Carles Puigdemont and Quim Torra, have denounced in a joint appearance in Perpignan the repression that all the heads of the executive have suffered in recent years . All three have signed a manifesto calling for international support: “Human rights Europe is incompatible with a country that engages in repression.” They wanted to symbolize their political persecution and assured that their situation ‘goes beyond the political parties’.

Artur Mas denounced that all three had suffered repression by the Spanish state for following the mandate of the polls. ‘We didn’t come to complain or show our wounds. We have come to explain ‘, he made clear before openly asking whether’ it is normal for the EU of the 21st century that the last three presidents of an EU territory have been persecuted for defending ideas and executing non-violent actions’ or if it is ‘ethical’ for Catalonia to have three persecuted presidents and political prisoners, while the emeritus king of Spain was able to flee with the complicity of the state. For Mas, ‘with this kind of Spain, a good Europe cannot be built’, because ‘the Europe of rights and freedoms is incompatible with the Spain of repression’.

Exiled president Carles Puigdemont highlighted the fact of having to meet in Perpignan, while Spanish king Felipe VI was in Barcelona. He recalled that, during his reign, all the presidents of the Catalan government had been persecuted. ‘It’s a record,’ he said, recalling that the investiture of Jordi Sànchez and Jordi Turull, who are in jail now, was also prevented: ‘There are three of us, but we could be five’. Puigdemont said that they will persist in their political struggle because ‘by defending the rights of Catalans we are defending human rights all over the world’.

Finally, Quim Torra said that the movement for self-determination has changed in recent years into a civil rights struggle over state authoritarianism. He also said that during his presidency he had checked the limits of autonomy and gave as an example the difficulties encountered by the Catalan government in implementing certain measures to combat the pandemic.


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Huge Protests against the Spanish so called king all over Catalonia


Several protests began on Thursday night when thousands burned pictures of the Spanish head of state in dozen of Catalan villages the day before of the expected visit of the so called "king" named by Franco and the Spanish PM Pedro Sanchez well konown by his antiCatalan remarks. On Friday morning a human chain with each participant keeping the safety distance was set up starting at Estació de França train station – where Philip VI attended an event – and extending to La Rambla. The Committees in Defence of the Republic CDR group activists began gathering  some 500 meters away from Estació de França, to also show their rejection of the Bourbon and threw painting to the police. More than 3,500 offices took the place many of them snippers armed in the top of the buildings.

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The office of the lawyers of Carles Puigdemont vandalized for the second time in 9 months

For the second time in 9 months, the office has been attacked and vandalized but nothing has been robbed.   "Tonight, our office has been vandalized for the second time in less than 9 months... we need to establish if anything is missed or have been left behind", has said Gonzalo Boye, one of the lawyers of Catalan president in exile and MEP Carles Puigdemont. In October 2019 the Spanish police officially raided the office, later in January Spanish squads also assaulted it. Who is coordinating such intimidatory attacks? Is this normal in the EU now? Spain has no reasons, only terror is its reason.

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Two Spanish terrorist attacks in the same night

The headquarters of the political movement Primàries (Primaries), a pro independence grassroots movement with fifty local councillors over Catalonia was the objective of the terrorists in Montornès del Vallès. They also painted the word Franco twice in front of the building. Franco was a Fascist dictator who ruled Spain since 1939 to 1975 when he died. He was never dismissed, in fact his heirs were named by him and still are ruling Spain as a monarchy of the Bourbon family. The second attack was in a cultural association, Òmnium Cultural, founded in 1961 to defend the Catalan culture. The headquarters in Barcelona were burned and the "broken crystals". This association with dozens of thousands members was also persecuted by Franco and his chairman is nowadays jailed by the post Francoist regime in Spain. 

As Spanish cannot defeat the will of democracy and freedom of the Catalan people, colonialist use the violence and terror to stop it.

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President of the Catalan National Assembly (ANC), being spied on by the Spanish (PSOE-U.Podemos) government

President of the grassroots civical organization Catalan National Assembly (ANC),Elisenda Paluzié, affirms she is being spied on by the Spanish PSOE-Unidas Podemos government. The economist and first woman deacon of the Barcelona's Economy Faculty explained that she is being spied on by the Spanish intelligence services: 'We have mobile phones operated by secret services of the PSOE government and Podemos' , she has said. She claims that a few months after she was elected president of the organization, her mobile phone was analyzed: ‘I had a device installed that records me and everything I type, it sends out. I am under surveillance. We have a state that aims to end the independence movement', she said.


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Carles Puigdemont, Exiled Catalan President and MEP, releases today the book 'Fight in Exile'

Carles Puigdemont, Exiled Catalan President and MEP, released today the book "Lluita a l'exili" (Fight in Exile). this is the third book of the President, also journalist, after 'The Catalan crisis' (2018) and 'M'explico' (I explain myself). The Catalan President exiled president in Waterloo, explain his last months in exile and his jailing in Germany. Puigdemont again proposes a referendum on Catalonia's independence in Catalonia, or even in the whole of Spain, as a solution to the issue. "We should not be the ones who propose another roadmap. We have done it several times, we have made several proposals respecting the constitutional path, but Madrid has rejected them all. Now it is time for Spain to be creative; otherwise we will continue fighting for an independence that is recognized by international law through the ruling of the International Court of Justice on Kosovo." 


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Barcelona withdraws the gold medal of Spanish King Juan Carlos in spite of pro Spanish left ruling party Unidas Podemos) abstention

The Barcelona's City Council today approved to withdraw the Gold Medal from former King Juan Carlos Bourbon who has flet to United Arab Emirates and reproved the management of the Spanish government. The Catalan pro-independence partiesTogether for Catalonia (JxCat) and Catalonia's Republican left (ERC) have voted in favor, Barcelona en Comú/Unidas Podemos abstained and PSOE (Spanish ruling party), PP (Spanish party founded by a Franco's minister), C'anos (Spanish anti Catalonian far right party) and Barcelona pel canvi (split from C'anos lead by the former PM of the French Republic Manuel Valls)  against. Barcelona pel Canvi tried unsuccesfully to avoid the vote. As usual the way that Spanish forces solve debates is to avoid a vote. 

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