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Esquerra proposes referendums on self-determination and monarchy

Pro-independence party begins campaign open to talks with Socialists on condition progress is made on Catalonia choosing its future

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12 April 2019 06:53 PM

by

ACN | Barcelona

The pro-independence Esquerra party (ERC) on Friday launched its campaign for the general election on April 28 by proposing two referendums, one on Catalonia's self-determination, and one on the Spanish monarchy or a republic.

According to ERC's second candidate for the Spanish parliament, Gabriel Rufián, the only condition that the party will insist on if its support is required by the PSOE Socialist party to form another government is "talking and making progress" on self-determination.

Rufián said that his party's solutions were based on "dialogue, dialogue and dialogue," and he asked whether "anyone can imagine ERC supporting [Socialist president Pedro] Sánchez for four years without him making a single gesture?" "The answer is no," he said.

Other measures the party proposes include ensuring compliance with the dependency law, passing full control of the Rodalies local rail network to the Catalan authorities, boosting the Mediterranean Corridor project, and better funding for pre-school education.

ERC's partner in government in Catalonia, the also pro-independence JxCat party, whose candidacy is led by jailed MP Jordi Sànchez, reacted by saying that self-determination is a "priority" of its electoral program, but that a referendum on monarchy and republic was not.

German MEP backs 'green tax' initiative

Also on Friday, the co-president of the Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament and German MEP, Ska Keller, appeared at left-wing En Comú Podem's campaign event, backing the party's proposal for a 3% 'green tax' on fortunes over a million euros.

The party says that the measure would raise as much as 10 billion euros in Spain and would be exclusively spent on energy transition. Keller welcomed the proposal, and argued for the need to create "a different way of developing the economy."

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  • Gabriel Rufián, the number two of ERC in the Spanish general election (by Guillem Roset)

  • Gabriel Rufián, the number two of ERC in the Spanish general election (by Guillem Roset)