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EU finds 27-S electoral list without politicians "a bit odd", UDC leader says

On Tuesday, Josep Antoni Duran i Lleida, Chairman of the Unió Democràtica de Catalunya (UDC) governing committee, said that the EU finds "a bit odd" the proposal of an electoral list without politicians for the 27-S elections. Speaking to the press from the European Parliament in Strasbourg, he said it is hard to "understand" how Catalonia will be governed."Although the post 27-S Executive's only goal will be Catalan independence, health care and education will need to be managed", he highlighted. UDC Secretary General, Ramon Espadaler, added that "UDC received the support of European Christian Democratic party leaders to run alone in the 27-S elections". In June, due to their differences on Catalonia's independence, UDC split from Artur Mas’ Convergència Democràtica de Catalunya (CDC), after running together in every election since 1978 and having forged a political "federation" between them.

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07 July 2015 08:25 PM

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ACN

Barcelona (ACN).- On Tuesday, Josep Antoni Duran i Lleida, Chairman of the Unió Democràtica de Catalunya (UDC) governing committee, said that the EU finds "a bit odd" the proposal of an electoral list without politicians for the 27-S elections. Speaking to the press from the European Parliament in Strasbourg, he said it is hard to "understand" how Catalonia will be governed."Although the post 27-S Executive's only goal will be Catalan independence, health care and education will need to be managed", he highlighted. UDC Secretary General, Espadaler Ramon, added that "UDC received the support of European Christian Democratic party leaders to run alone in the 27-S elections". In June, due to their differences on Catalonia's independence, UDC split from Artur Mas’ Convergència Democràtica de Catalunya (CDC), after running together in every election since 1978 and having forged a political "federation" between them.


On Tuesday, the Chairman of the UDC's governing committee, Josep Antoni Duran i Lleida, together with the party's Secretary General Ramon Espadaler and the MEP Francesc Gambús held a series of meetings in Strasbourg on the current situation in Catalonia. In particular, they met with the Heads of the Christian democratic delegations from Germany, Luxembourg, Ireland, France and Flanders as well as with the European Commission Vice-President, Jyrki Katainen, the Chairman of the EPP Group in the European Parliament, Manfred Weber, and the President of the European Parliament, Martin Schulz. A meeting with the EU Commissioner for Social Affairs was also scheduled. 

The scenario of a "Parliament without politicians" is not really understood in the EU

After the meetings, Josep Antoni Duran i Lleida said that a government must "take decisions" and the scenario of a "parliament without politicians and a government with politicians" is "a bit bizarre" and not really understood in Europe. "Parliaments shape policies and governments execute them", he said, criticising the proposal of a civil society list without politicians. Duran i Lleida also complained about the fact that, at the moment, local politicians are speaking about drafting a Catalan Constitution without knowing who has to prepare it, warning about potential disagreements in the management of day-to-day issues. "Maybe ERC (the left-wing pro-independence party) does agree with us, and especially CUP (the radical left-wing pro independence party) does not", said the Chairman of the UDC's governing committee.

"When we explain this situation, Europe struggles with understanding it", Ramon Espadaler said. "But it is not up to us to make it understood. We just have to explain our own proposal", he added. According to Espadaler, UDC's decision to run alone in the 27-S elections is "fully backed by Christian Democrats in Europe". "We do not only see understanding but – above all – real support for what we are doing, which is running in the coming elections as UDC, with our acronym", said Espadaler, thanking Josep Antoni Duran and other party leaders for backing his candidacy for the 27-S elections. 

According to Duran, Espadaler qualifies as "a very good candidate". "I know he has the support of many UDC leaders, and I also give him mine", said the Chairman of the party's governing committee. According to him, the former Catalan Minister for Home Affairs represents all the moral values needed to run as a candidate: "reliability, calmness, neutrality, moderation and common sense". "They are all necessary and are all qualities that Espadaler has", Duran said.

International Agenda

"I do not want to compare political agendas", said Josep Antoni Duran i Lleida, who met the Vice-President of the European Commission Jyrki Katainen and President of the European Parliament Martin Schulz only a week after Artur Mas travelled to Brussels to speak with the Belgian Minister for Foreign Affairs, the President of the Flemish Parliament, the Prime Minister of Flanders and the EU Commissioner for Transport. According to Duran, with the breakup of the centre-right Catalan Nationalist Coalition (CiU), CDC "lost in many ways, not just internationally". "But it is their choice, they opted for ERC and who knows, perhaps for CUP as well", said the leader of UDC.

"We have always been open to the world and especially to the EU, and we make this political capital available to our country", Duran said. "I do not want to compare our political agenda with the CDC one, as it is up to you to do that. We just work on our agenda, because we think it is the best thing we can do for Catalonia", Duran said to the press.

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  • Josep Antoni Duran i Lleida with the President of the European Parliament, Martin Schulz (by EP)

  • Josep Antoni Duran i Lleida with the President of the European Parliament, Martin Schulz (by EP)