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Extreme-right organisation sues President of main pro-independence grass-roots organisation

Manos Limpias, an extreme-right and Spanish nationalist trade union, will file a judicial complaint against Carme Forcadell, President of the Catalan National Assembly (ANC), the grass-roots NGO that is organising the main campaign for independence from Spain. The far-right organisation will sue Forcadell for "provoking sedition", as they consider she is "the driving force" and "the leader of Catalan civil society", and the main promoter of "a road map" towards independence. In addition, Manos Limpias' Secretary General, Miguel Bernad, said they have "data" showing that "the consultation vote will take place" on the 9th of November, even if the Spanish authorities ban it. The extreme-right organisation does not rule out the possibility of presenting similar complaints against the President of the Catalan Government, Artur Mas, and the President of the left-wing independence party ERC, Oriol Junqueras.

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21 August 2014 07:13 PM

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ACN

Barcelona (ACN).- Manos Limpias, an extreme-right and Spanish nationalist trade union, will file a judicial complaint against Carme Forcadell, President of the Catalan National Assembly (ANC), the grass-roots NGO that is organising the main campaign for independence from Spain. The far-right organisation will sue Forcadell for "provoking sedition", as they consider she is "the driving force" and the "leader of Catalan civil society". In a radio interview on Thursday, Manos Limpias' Secretary General, Miguel Bernad, stated that the ANC President is the main promoter of "a road map" towards independence. In addition, he said they have "data" showing that "the consultation vote will take place" on the 9th of November, even if the Spanish authorities ban it. Furthermore, he added that the extreme-right organisation does not rule out the possibility of presenting similar complaints against the President of the Catalan Government and the leader of the centre-right pro-Catalan State coalition CiU, Artur Mas, and the President of the left-wing independence party ERC, Oriol Junqueras.


The extreme-right organisation Manos Limpias (which means "Clean Hands", although it has nothing to do with the homonym Italian organisation from the 1990s) considers that the President of the Catalan National Assembly is promoting "the subversion of the constitutional order" and therefore is "provoking sedition", an offense included in Spain's penal code. In an interview on Thursday on Catalunya Ràdio – Catalonia's public-owned radio broadcaster – the Secretary General of the Spanish nationalist organisation, Miguel Bernad, said that Forcadell is "the leader" of "a road map", promoted by civil society, towards Catalonia's independence. Bernad stated that they will file the complaint next week in a court in Barcelona. The person "who is carrying all the weight and is leading Catalan civil society is this lady, with the explicit support of the ERC", he said, referring to Carme Forcadell.

Furthermore, if the Catalan Parliament finally approves the Law on Consultation Votes – which would be used to call the self-determination vote, Bernad stated they might also file a complaint for sedition against the Catalan President and CiU leader, Artur Mas, and the leader of the opposition and President of the ERC, Oriol Junqueras. Mas and Junqueras are currently the leaders of Catalonia's two main political parties and are the main politicians supporting self-determination and independence from Spain. Furthermore, the Law on Consultation Votes was foreseen in the 2006 Catalan Statute of Autonomy, which was approved that year by the Spanish Parliament and by the Catalan people through a binding referendum. However, the Statute of Autonomy was trimmed in June 2010 by a highly-politicised Constitutional Court after obscure movements by the People's Party (PP). The Court stated that Catalonia was not a nation and highlighted that consultation votes could only be undertaken on issues over which the Catalan Government had powers. In April 2014, the Constitutional Court stated that Catalonia's right to self-determination did not exist but at the same time it recognised Catalans' right to decide on their own future and reminded political powers that their task is to solve political problems. This was interpreted in Catalonia as the Court asking politicians in Madrid and Barcelona to sit together and negotiate a way out, which should be voted by Catalans.

On top of this, Bernad affirmed that the organisation he chairs has "data" showing that on the 9th of November "the [self-determination] consultation vote will take place" even if is banned by the Spanish authorities. He added that he does not base this suspicion "only on statements but also on specific facts".

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  • Carme Forcadell, President of ANC, in a recent press conference (by R. Garrido)

  • Carme Forcadell, President of ANC, in a recent press conference (by R. Garrido)