PP and Cs urge Sánchez to suspend Catalonia's self-rule again
Opposition parties in Spain accuse Catalan president of leading "separatist cells" and promoting "violence"
The People's Party (PP) and Ciudadanos (Cs) urged the Spanish government on Monday to suspend Catalonia's self-rule again. Catalonia's self-government was suspended for seven months following a declaration of independence last year.
The PP leader, Pablo Casado, accused Catalan president Quim Torra of leading a 'kale borroka'. The 'kale borroka' was the name given to the urban guerrilla activists in the Basque Country, usually linked to defunct terrorist group ETA.
Casado even went on to suggest that pro-independence parties should be made illegal because, in his view, they "promote violence and civil confrontation."
In a similar stance, the leader of Cs, Albert Rivera, urged the Spanish president Pedro Sánchez to once again apply Article 155 of the Constitution in Catalonia and impose direct rule. "Quim Torra encourages the violence of separatist cells that hit people, cut off roads and train lines, and assault public buildings," Rivera said.
"Mr Sánchez, how long will you keep allowing this violation of rights and this humiliation of all Spaniards?" he asked.
However, Sánchez made no public comments during the first anniversary of the independence referendum. Instead, some of his ministers spoke out, saying that the events in Catalonia are not particularly worrying.
The Spanish government's infrastructure minister, José Luis Ábalos, said that opposition parties in Spain "should not fall for or generate provocations." He actually described the accusations by Cs and the PP that Torra had made proclamations in favor of political violence as "fake news." According to Ábalos, the Catalan president only made a "rhetorical" defense of the independence referendum.