Torra 'committed to dialogue' in letter to European leaders
Catalan president mentions jailed and exiled politicians and says country is in an “open conflict” with Spanish government
The Catalan president, Quim Torra, has insisted on “dialogue and negotiation” to resolve the “political discrepancies” with Spain in a letter sent to all European leaders made public on Tuesday. Torra quoted himself in his investiture speech in the Catalan Parliament to say that his cabinet understands “debate, dialogue, and the ballot box to be the only means of progression” for the Catalan society.
In the letter, the Catalan leader also goes through the atypical current circumstances in the country, saying that his appointment last month took place amid an “open conflict between the Catalan institutions and the Spanish government.” Indeed, he tells his European counterparts that some “democratic Catalan politicians have been accused of rebellion and placed in provisional detention” while others are “in exile,” such as Carles Puigdemont.
Despite the current circumstances, says Torra, his government is committed to “the values of solidarity, diversity and cohesion,” as well as “human dignity, freedom, democracy, pacifism, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights.” In his letter, Torra makes no criticism of the EU and says his government is “confident in the Catalan society’s clear devotion to Europe.” He also quotes the UN anthem, with music of Catalan cellist Pau Casals and lyrics of poet W.H. Auden: “Where fate is freedom.”
“I am entirely at your disposal in the interest of maintaining a sincere and fruitful collaboration that will allow us to tackle the collective challenges that we are being faced with,” also reads the letter in its final part. This is the first public contact from Quim Torra to the European leaders.