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Embattled in political disputes, pro-independence parties pledge unity on National Day

Catalan government coalition partners call for a common strategy to release jailed leaders and achieve independence

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11 September 2020 01:33 PM

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ACN|Barcelona

Embattled in long-running political disputes, Catalonia’s two ruling pro-independence parties, Junts per Catalunya (JxCat) and Esquerra (ERC), marked National Day celebrations by pledging unity and making calls to overcome disagreements — at least for the day.

Under tight safety measures due to the coronavirus pandemic, party officials attended the traditional floral tribute to Rafael Casanova, the head councilor of Barcelona when the city fell to the Borbonic troops in the War of Spanish Succession on September 11, 1714.

The president of the Catalan parliament and ERC member, Roger Torrent, called for commitment to finding a solution to the political conflict between Catalonia and Spain, and demanded that this be the last National Day with pro-independence leaders behind bars.

The spokesperson of the Catalan government and JxCat member, Meritxell Budó, stressed that any political solution to the independence conflict must include an amnesty for jailed leaders and the recognition of Catalonia’s right to self-determination.

Elsa Artadi, also of JxCat, called for unity within the pro-independence bloc: "When we are strong and united we can continue to move forward to achieve our goal, which is Catalonia’s independence."

With their most senior leaders either in prison or in exile, JxCat and ERC have struggled to agree on a common strategy since the 2017 push to hold a referendum and declare independence, thwarted by Spain.

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