Opposition leader accuses Catalan public TV of 'lying' and bias

Inés Arrimadas says in an interview she will not visit jailed leaders and reveals she warned them in private before declaration of independence


Cs leader Inés Arrimadas speaks to the press in Sabadell on October 18 2018 (by Norma Vidal)
Cs leader Inés Arrimadas speaks to the press in Sabadell on October 18 2018 (by Norma Vidal) / ACN

ACN | Barcelona

November 12, 2018 11:27 AM

The leader of the opposition in Catalonia, Inés Arrimadas, has accused Catalan public television (TV3) of being biased in favor of the independence movement.

Arrimadas made the remarks in a prime-time interview on the same TV outlet on Sunday evening, when she was interviewed by the head of the network, Vicent Sanchis.

“[TV3] lies, a lot of lies are said, the reporting does not reflect reality, I could give you a lot of examples,” she told Sanchis.

Leaders "in exile"

Arrimadas, the leader of the Ciutadans (Cs) party, criticized the broadcaster’s news bulletins for saying that several former government members are “in exile,” referring to the former president Carles Puigdemont and some of his former ministers.

For the Cs leader, the former officials aren’t exiles, and her party has repeatedly referred to them as “fugitives” and “members of a coup d’état.”  

Arrimadas also claimed that her party's voters “have a right to watch TV3” but cannot do so, as they do not feel represented when watching it.

Sanchis defended the TV outlet and called on Arrimadas to show “responsibility.” The TV3 director also accused her party of stating “nonsense and untruths” against the broadcaster.

Viewing figures for the interview were unusually low for a prime time show on TV3: some 178,000 viewers (6.9% share).

No to visiting jailed leaders

During the interview, Arrimadas also said she would not visit the Catalan pro-independence leaders in jail after receiving an invitation to do so by the incarcerated politicians and activists themselves.

“I do not accept that visiting them in prison or not is a sign of humanity,” she said.

Arrimadas also revealed that she tried to persuade two of the leaders not to declare independence by warning them of the consequences in a private conversation over coffee.

Direct rule

The opposition leader also urged Spain's Socialist president, Pedro Sánchez, to impose direct rule on Catalonia again, beginning the process by officially asking the Catalan president, Quim Torra, whether he intends to respect the Spanish legal framework.