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Puigdemont and Pedro Sánchez to meet on Tuesday

The leader of the Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE) and Spanish president hopeful Pedro Sánchez asked the Catalan President to meet in Barcelona to discuss his investiture. The talks will include issues such as the Catalan and the Spanish political situation, a source from the Catalan Government has revealed to CNA. The Socialist leader, who was twice defeated in Congress, wants to present to Puigdemont his government proposal, which includes an agreement with unionist Ciutadans. The Catalan President will defend during the meeting the belief that allowing a referendum in Catalonia is essential to passing the investiture vote. Ciutadans has already warned Sánchez that they will walk away if he grants a referendum to Catalonia.

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14 March 2016 05:41 PM

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ACN

Barcelona (CNA).- The leader of the Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE) and Spanish president hopeful Pedro Sánchez asked the Catalan President to meet in Barcelona to discuss his investiture. The talks will include issues such as the Catalan and the Spanish political situation, a source from the Catalan Government has revealed to CNA. The Socialist leader, who was twice defeated in Congress, wants to present to Mr Puigdemont his government proposal, which includes an agreement with unionist Ciutadans. The Catalan President will defend during the meeting the belief that allowing a referendum in Catalonia is essential to passing the investiture vote. Ciutadans has already warned Sánchez that they will walk away if he grants a referendum to Catalonia.


The Secretary of Communication of Ciutadans, Fernando de Páramo, said on Monday that they do not have a problem, in principle, with Sánchez and Puigdemont meeting. However, he warned that the investiture agreement that they signed includes a clear rejection of any referendum on independence. That’s why he said that, if Sánchez doesn’t comply with this, Ciutadans will break the agreement to support him and will walk away.

De Páramo said that Ciutadans didn’t know about the meeting but that the Socialists “don’t have to communicate” to them who they meet with. The Ciutadans Secretary of Communication added that while they reject a referendum, they would see positively a negotiation on “improving” some powers for Catalonia. The unionist party supports, for example, a change in the fiscal system of Catalonia. 

Sources from PSOE said that the talks will be generally based on the institutional situation in Catalonia and Spain and won’t only focus on the investiture. In fact, they warned that PSOE doesn’t want the future government of Spain to depend on the support of pro-independence parties. The same sources said that Catalonia is one of the main priorities for PSOE, and that a future government lead by Sánchez would try to rebuild trust between Madrid and Barcelona.

The Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont, said that the meeting is an “example” of his willingness to keep a dialogue open “with everyone”. “As a Government, our aspiration is to serve the people and the indispensable way to do this is by being always open to dialogue”. Puigdemont added that since he became President he has had “many opportunities” to prove that he is open to dialogue and stated that “this one won’t be the last”.

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