òmnium cultural

Catalan human towers to be built in 7 European capitals for self-determination

April 29, 2014 05:22 PM | ACN

On 8th of June, thousands of Catalans will simultaneously build their traditional human towers – called castells – in Berlin, Brussels, Geneva, Lisbon, London, Paris and Barcelona, carrying a banner reading "Catalans want to vote". This festive demonstration aims to raise international awareness about the aspiration shared by more than 75% of Catalonia's population: to be able to hold a self-determination vote to decide on its independence from Spain. The project 'Catalans want to vote – Human towers for democracy' is a privately-funded initiative organised by the civil society organisation Òmnium Cultural. In fact, this Tuesday it was announced that the project has reached its objective of raising 120,000 euros through Verkami's crowd-funding web site. The money will be used to pay for the trip costs of the castellers, those building the human towers (called castells).

Catalan institutions launch a website to explain the self-determination process abroad

April 23, 2014 12:37 PM | ACN

CataloniaVotes.eu is a new website set up to present the independence referendum, related news, a chronology of the last few years and facts about Catalan society, culture and economy to a foreign audience. The new webpage is in English, French and German and will also follow the day-to-day evolution of the referendum process, a consultation vote scheduled for the 9th November. It has been launched by the Public Diplomacy Council of Catalonia (Diplocat), an organisation backed by the Catalan Government, the four Provincial Councils, universities, chambers of commerce, the main business-owner associations, trade unions, FC Barcelona and other public and private institutions.

Catalan school system against Hispanicisation and the Spanish Government’s Education Reform

February 11, 2014 04:04 PM | ACN

On Tuesday Catalonia’s education stakeholders – including unions, pedagogic organisations and parent associations – asked the Catalan Executive and Parliament to lead “the boycott” of the Spanish Government’s Education Reform, known as LOMQE. This reform aims to recentralise education powers, foster religion and impose Spanish as a language of instruction in Catalonia. Furthermore, on Monday evening thousands of people demonstrated in front of Catalonia’s High Court (TSJC) in support of the current school model in Catalonia, which is based on the linguistic immersion principle that guarantees the knowledge of both Spanish and Catalan. Political parties, trade unions, cultural associations and teaching organisations were protesting against the TSJC’s recent ruling that imposed a requirement that 25% of a school’s curriculum be taught in Spanish if a single pupil asks for it. The TSJC was interpreting a judgement by the Spanish Supreme Court, framed in a broader offensive against Catalan language.

The Spanish Government “will not allow” and “will not negotiate” on Catalonia’s self-determination vote

December 12, 2013 10:08 PM | ACN

“I want to tell you with all clarity that this consultation will not take place”, emphasised the Spanish Prime Minister, Mariano Rajoy. “It goes radically against the Constitution and the law” and “it frontally clashes against the indissoluble unity of Spain”, he insisted. The “unity of Spain and the sovereignty belonging to the Spanish people as a whole are not debatable and are out of any negotiation”, he added. Therefore, the Spanish Government, run by People’s Party (PP), completely rejects authorising a self-determination vote in Catalonia, whose exact question and date had been agreed on this Thursday amongst a majority of Catalan parties. The parties had decided to hold the vote on November 9, 2014 in order for the Spanish institutions to have time to negotiate the procedures. Meanwhile, the main civil society organisations pushing for Catalonia’s independence announced they were accepting the question.

Number of Catalan speakers rising despite adverse context

November 13, 2013 09:25 PM | ACN / Pau Cortina

Catalan language speakers are increasing their number and have exceeded the 10 million people mark, according to the latest report on the situation of Catalan. This means that 72.4 % of the population now speaks the language in the various areas of the Catalan linguistic community. In addition, 12.8 million understand it, representing 91.7% of the population. These latest figures confirm a consolidation trend, which paradoxically, is occurring in an unfavourable context, with an “adverse socio-political environment in territories outside Catalonia”. According to the report, the political and judicial “offensive” against Catalan are the main threats against the standardization of a language which, nevertheless, continues “to progress”.

Massive concert supporting Catalonia’s self-determination is ignored by Spanish politicians

July 2, 2013 12:20 AM | CNA

On Saturday evening, 90,000 people gathered in FC Barcelona Camp Nou stadium to attend a concert backing Catalonia’s right to self-determination. The event, organised by a civil society entity – Òmnium Cultural – and without public funding, called for a self-determination referendum in 2014. The two largest political parties in Catalonia, which share a parliamentary stability pact, stated that a specific date for a self-determination vote should be fixed after December 2013. In addition, they insisted that the Catalan President will send a letter to the Spanish Prime Minister in July asking for this vote to be organised. However, in Madrid, the reactions have been almost non-existent. The Spanish Justice Minister insisted that a referendum would be illegal since sovereignty is rooted into the Spanish people as a whole.