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The majority of Catalan parties propose an independence vote in 2014 the day after the human chain

The day after Catalonia’s National Day and the 1.6 million strong human chain supporting independence from Spain, Catalan parties reacted to the massive demonstration. The President of the Catalan Government and leader of the governing Centre-Right Catalan Nationalist Coalition (CiU), Artur Mas, re-affirmed yesterday his “commitment” to organising a referendum on self-determination for 2014. The Left-Wing Catalan Independence Party (ERC) declared its intention to work with other parties and civil society organisations on having the question and exact date for the vote ready within the next two months in order to call it in 2014. The Catalan Socialist Party (PSC) asked the other parties to put forward their projects for the day after the referendum.

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12 September 2013 10:19 PM

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ACN

Barcelona (ACN).- The day after Catalonia’s National Day and the 1.6 million strong human chain supporting independence from Spain, Catalan parties reacted to the massive demonstration. The President of the Catalan Government and leader of the governing Centre-Right Catalan Nationalist Coalition (CiU), Artur Mas, yesterday re-affirmed his “commitment” to organising a self-determination vote for 2014. The Left-Wing Catalan Independence Party (ERC) declared its intention to work with other parties and civil society organisations on having the question and exact date for the vote ready within the next two months in order to call it in 2014. The Catalan Socialist Party (PSC) asked the other parties to put forward their projects for the day after the referendum. The People’s Party (PP) – which runs the Spanish Government – stated that yesterday’s demonstration “does not represent the real Catalonia” and insisted that “6 million Catalans stayed at home”. The Catalan Green Socialist and Communist Coalition (ICV-EUiA) asked for clarification of the legal way to organise a referendum “as soon as possible”, and urged the Spanish Government “to make a move”. The anti-Catalan-nationalism and populist party Ciutadans (C’s) accused the organisers of yesterday’s human chain of “wanting to replace representative democracy with democracy by acclamation” Finally, the radical left-wing and independence party CUP insisted that the “conditions to hold an independence vote already exist” but warned that “Catalan people need to maintain the energy of mobilisation in order to exercise the right to self-determination”.


On the evening of Catalonia’s National Day, the President of the Catalan Government gave his first speech after the massive human chain demanding independence from Spain. Artur Mas, who is also the leader of the governing CiU, stated that his “commitment” is to call Catalans to vote on their collective future in 2014.

The Catalan Government decided to call for a self-determination vote in 2014

The Catalan Presidency Minister added on Thursday that the Executive already has “a calendar” with “a reasonable timing” and “the people’s mandate” to call for a self-determination vote in 2014. However, he also added that yesterday’s demonstration puts “pressure” on them as well as gives “strength” to their plans. Homs emphasised that what is “important now” is “to do things right” and it “will not speed up things”. In this vein, he explained that the Government will turn to the other political parties and civil society – included in the ‘National Pact for the Right to Self-determination’ – in order to agree on the exact question and date to hold the self-determination vote within the next year. The Catalan Government’s calendar is to have the vote’s question and exact date before next December.

The ERC is determined to set the vote’s question and date within the next 2 months

The ERC’s Secretary General, Marta Rovira, stated that “from today onwards” the party will start “talking with other parties and civil society organisations in order to have a date and a clear question as soon as possible”. She also added that “if we can have this set within the next two months, we will have it”. Since last year’s demonstration and elections, the ERC’s aim has always been to hold the self-determination vote no later than 2014. The ERC’s President Oriol Junqueras re-affirmed this commitment on Thursday. He also added that the party does not envisage any alternative scenario. The ERC already explained a few weeks ago it would prefer to hold the vote before Scotland’s independence referendum, scheduled for the 18th September 2014. Rovira also emphasised that yesterday’s demonstration proved that “civil society is the true protagonist” of Catalonia’s self-determination process.

The PSC asked parties to “make an offer” for the day after the self-determination vote

The Spokesperson of the Catalan Socialist Party (PSC), Maurici Lucena, asked the other parties “to clarify” their political projects. The PSC asked the rest of the parties “to present their solutions” and “to make an offer” for the day after the self-determination vote, in order to explain clearly the political programme they stand for. He considered that the demand for holding a self-determination vote “is widely shared” and what is needed now is to explain the “long-term projects”. To this end he restated that the PSC wants a self-determination vote and supports a federal Spain with Catalonia in it, having greater fiscal and political powers. Furthermore, Lucena asked the Catalan President Artur Mas “to abandon the ambiguity” and “to pronounce for once the word ‘independence’”.

The PP stated the “real Catalonia” did not demonstrate

The leader of the Catalan branch of the People’s Party (PP) – the party running the Spanish Government, Alícia Sánchez-Camacho, stated that “the real Catalonia” of “more than 6 million people” did not participate in the human chain and “stayed at home” during the .6 million demonstration. She accused the Catalan President of leaving those Catalans “orphaned” by their Government and being only the President of the pro-independence supporters.

The ICV-EUiA urges the Spanish Government “to make a move” to authorise a referendum

The leader of the Catalan Green Socialist and Communist Coalition (ICV-EUiA), Joan Herrera, urged the Spanish Government “to make a move” to authorise a referendum and “clarify” the legal way of holding such vote. Herrera warned Madrid that if the Spanish Government persists in blocking the vote, Catalans would be called to vote “in any case”.

The C’s accused the Catalan Government of “kidnapping” the National Day

The anti-Catalan-nationalism and populist party Ciutadans (C’s) accused the Catalan Government of “kidnapping” the National Day and using it as a pro-independence platform. The C’s Spokesperson, Jordi Cañas, also accused the human chain organisers of “replacing representative democracy with the democracy by acclamation”.

The CUP asks for an immediate referendum

Finally, the radical left-wing an independence party CUP insisted that the “conditions to hold an independence vote already exist” but warned that “Catalan people need to maintain the energy of mobilisation in order to exercise the right to self-determination”.

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  • Independence supporters at Catalunya Square in Barcelona, gathering for the 'Catalan Way' (by A. Moldes)

  • Independence supporters at Catalunya Square in Barcelona, gathering for the 'Catalan Way' (by A. Moldes)