Pressure mounting on Catalan government to lift independence suspension
Left-wing CUP and main pro-Catalan state civil organization ask Puigdemont’s cabinet to make the move after Spain’s lack of response to calls for dialogue
The Catalan government is under pressure. Not only from Spain, which is warning that it could suspend Catalonia’s self-government if independence is enforced. But also from some pro-independence movements, which are pushing for just the opposite. They are eager to see the suspension to the independence declaration lifted. The Catalan president, Carles Puigdemont, is between a rock and a hard place.
Puigdemont announced on Tuesday that his intention is to declare independence and enforce it because for him, the October 1 referendum results are valid and binding. However, in his speech in Parliament, he suspended temporarily independence in favor of opening a period for dialogue with Spain. The day after the speech, the Spanish government responded to the calls for dialogue by saying that they will not accept being involved in any mediation. Besides, the Spanish president, Mariano Rajoy, opened the door to applying article 155 of the Spanish Constitution to Catalonia. This would effectively suspend its self-rule.
"If they intend to continue applying article 155 and want to continue threatening and silencing us, they have to do it with the republic declared"
Deadline ends on Monday 16
Rajoy has given until next Monday for the Catalan government to clarify whether Puigdemont did declare independence, even if he suspended it immediately afterwards. If he answers with anything that it is not a clear no or fails to reply entirely, Madrid will take full control of Catalonia’s autonomy. While Puigdemont’s cabinet has not answered yet, the far-left CUP party urged him to reply that he did indeed declare independence on Tuesday.
CUP party pushing to declare “the republic”
“If they intend to continue applying article 155 and want to continue threatening and silencing us, they have to do it with the republic declared,” said the CUP party in a letter to the Catalan cabinet on Friday. “Only by a declaration of the republic will we be respecting what the majority expressed in the vote,” added the statement.
The main pro-independence civil organization, Catalan National Assembly (ANC in Catalan), called the government to lift the suspension of the declaration of independence announced by Puigdemont on Tuesday. According to ANC, “it makes no sense” keeping the declaration on hold because of the “refusal of the Spanish government to any dialogue proposal”.