Barcelona mayor won't attend King of Spain’s official reception
The Catalan parliament speaker will not be present at the event either, arguing that the king has not “addresed a single word” to victims of police violence on October 1
The Barcelona mayor, Ada Colau, will not attend the King of Spain’s official reception. Some hours after Colau's statement, the Catalan parliament speaker, Roger Torrent, confirmed that he will not be present at the event either, arguing that the king has not “addresed a single word” to victims of police violence on October 1.
Colau justified her decision by criticizing Felipe’s stance towards imprisoned Catalan leaders and victims of police violence on October 1. The official reception is expected to be held next Sunday and Monday on the occasion of the opening of the Mobile World Congress (MWC). The Barcelona based international fair on all things mobile kicks off on Monday.
Yet Colau confirmed that she will attend the opening dinner on Sunday at the Palau de la Música concert hall. According to her, she will attend this event to show “institutional support” for the MWC. Still, two high-ranking Catalan officials announced that they will not attend the opening dinner, since Junqueras and Puigdemont are not able to attend the event.
The Spanish monarch made no call for dialogue
After police violence on October 1, the Spanish monarch made no call for dialogue between the Catalan and the Spanish executive. He only said he was determined to ensure “harmony among Spaniards,” but didn’t mention the police violence and the approximately 900 people injured while trying to vote in the referendum.
In a highly unusual move, he took sides in the institutional clash between Catalonia and Spain, as he took a very similar stance to that of the Spanish government in an official statement broadcast on television.
The MWC kicks off on Monday
The Barcelona based international fair on all things mobile kicks off on Monday, and the city of Barcelona is ready to welcome thousands of visitors from February 26 to March 1. More than 108,000 people, from more than 200 countries, are expected to attend this year’s edition, with more than 2,300 exhibitors. 170 government delegation will also attend the event.
The economic impact of the Mobile World Congress is also high, estimated at €471 million, with 13,000 temporary jobs also created thanks to the annual conference. Since the first Mobile World Congress in Barcelona in 2006, the congress has generated €4.4 billion euros for the economy as well as 115,000 job posts.