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Catalan government accuses Spain of ‘breaking off talks’ and ‘giving in to far-right pressure’

Catalan officials to remain "at the negotiation table" hoping Madrid will join again

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08 February 2019 06:11 PM

by

ACN | Barcelona

The Catalan government has accused Spain of "breaking off the talks" between the executives after Madrid ruled out any further concessions to the pro-independence parties on Friday.

"We regret that the Spanish government has abandoned dialogue and given in to pressure from those who are against democracy and politics," said Elsa Artadi, the Catalan cabinet spokesperson.

Vice president Pere Aragonès accused Madrid of "ceding ground to Spanish nationalism and the far right."     

A proposal from Madrid for an observer to attend and coordinate the meetings between Catalan parties outraged opposition forces in the Spanish parliament, which accused the central government of conceding to the demands of the pro-independence parties.

The main opposition parties in Spain and Catalonia, People’s Party and Ciutadans, as well as the far-right Vox party, have called a major rally in Madrid for Sunday to reject dialogue between the Catalan and Spanish governments.

The Catalan government stressed on Friday that it remains “at the negotiation table,”  hoping that the Spanish executive will soon resume the talks.

For months, the government of Pedro Sánchez tried to secure the support of the pro-independence parties in order to pass the general budget for 2019—the most crucial vote since he came to power.

While the pro-independence parties helped the Socialist leader become president in a no-confidence vote against the conservative leader, Mariano Rajoy, the relationship between the Catalan and Spanish governments has not been easy, as their stances on self-determination remain far apart.

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  • Catalan government spokesperson Elsa Artadi (left) and vice president Pere Aragonès (by Pau Cortina)

  • Catalan government spokesperson Elsa Artadi (left) and vice president Pere Aragonès (by Pau Cortina)