carles puigdemont


Brussels applauds Catalonia’s offer to host refugees and calls for Madrid’s support

April 18, 2016 02:36 PM | ACN

EU Migration Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos stated that “all levels of governance can contribute” to the European Commission’s commitments to tackle the refuges crisis. In a letter addressed to Catalan President Carles Puigdemont, Avramopoulos considered Catalonia’s offer to host 4,500 refugees “a step in the right direction” and called for the offer to become a reality as soon as possible. He also lamented that Spain had “only relocated 18 migrants” besides having committed to “assisting 6,127” refugees. “These schemes have to be implemented as a matter of urgency” to “ensure that the Union takes on its fair share of the global responsibility to provide a safe haven for the world's refugees”, stated the letter. Avramopoulos also expressed his will for Spain’s government to “support” Catalonia’s efforts in this matter, as it is “responsible for the implementation of the relevant EU decisions”.

Pablo Iglesias reaffirms his commitment to holding a referendum in Catalonia

April 8, 2016 07:52 PM | ACN

The Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont, and Spanish alternative left ‘Podemos’Secretary General, Pablo Iglesias, met this Friday at Palau de la Generalitat. Iglesias assured before the media that he transmitted to Puigdemont his “compromise regarding the celebration of a referendum in Catalonia” which is “the best solution to the current deadlock”. “Catalan society has to decide and the vast majority of Catalans want to do so”, he stated. The Catalan government’s spokeswoman, Neus Munté, explained the content of the meeting to the media and emphasised “Puigdemont’s intention to keep the roadmap”towards independence “which will continue to be developed”regardless of the negotiations to form a new government in Spain. The meeting comes one day after the Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE), Spanish Unionist ‘Ciutadans’and Podemos met to discuss a possible triple agreement to form an alternative government to that currently ruling in Spain, composed by the conservative People’s Party (PP). 

CUP urge Puigdemont “to make a clear step towards the rupture” before January

April 6, 2016 06:25 PM | ACN

Pro-independence radical left CUP presented a document analysing the recent political strategy regarding Catalonia’s push for independence and the steps to be taken in the near future. The document sets an ultimatum to Catalan President Carles Puigdemont and his government to keep the commitment in relation to the agreed roadmap towards independence. CUP urge pro-independence cross-party list ‘Junts Pel Sí’to make a clear step “on the way towards the rupture”by the 10th of January, when the government will celebrate its first year in office. Otherwise, CUP will consider these 12 months “a fraud”and will therefore promote “a change of paradigm”. The document also nuances that this step has to “turn”the “contention”expressed so far in the government’s political and public discourse.

Puigdemont and Rajoy meet for the first time at tribute to Germanwings tragedy

March 23, 2016 06:25 PM | ACN

Catalan President Carles Puigdemont and current Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy presided over the tribute to the victims of the Germanwings aircraft which crashed in the French Alps one year ago, on its way from Barcelona to Düsseldorf, with 150 on board. Both presidents exchanged “cordial” words during the institutional event but avoided commenting on any political issue, sources from the government stated. This Wednesday’s coincidence was the first meeting between Puigdemont and Rajoy since the Catalan President took office, on the 12th of January. The Catalan government’s spokeswoman, Neus Munté, noted that Rajoy didn’t call Puigdemont when he was instated as President or to “show condolence” after the coach crash which killed 13 international students this past Sunday in the south of Catalonia.

Puigdemont offers Brussels to host 4,500 refugees, Spain criticises “unilateral” action

March 18, 2016 07:04 PM | ACN

Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont expressed Catalonia’s willingness to accommodate 4,500 refugees and provide “a solution for those millions of people running away from war”. In a letter to the EU Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship, Dimitris Avramopoulos, Catalan President Carles Puigdemont stated that the Catalan government and institutions are “working to accommodate around 4,500 refugees” and assured that Catalonia is “ready to receive up to 1,800 refugees” right now, “600 of which would be hosted directly by the Catalan government”. On the other hand, the Spanish executive responded to Puigdemont’s action and accused him of acting “unilaterally” and “adding more problems” to the existing situation. “A region in Europe wants to be the solution to the problem, this is impossible”, stated current Spanish vice president, Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría. 

Puigdemont seeks support to report Spain’s failure to build the Mediterranean Corridor to the EU

March 16, 2016 06:35 PM | ACN

Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont, will promote a common front with other Autonomous Communities in Spain to report to the EU that the Spanish government is failing to fulfil its promises regarding the construction of the Mediterranean corridor. This long-awaited railway corridor is set to transport freight and passengers non-stop from Gibraltar to Central Europe and would connect the Spanish Mediterranean ports, which are a gateway to North Africa and represent 50% of the Spanish population and wealth. According to Puigdemont, the Spanish State “is failing to fulfil” their promises and “Europe as a whole” will have to “pay the price for it”. Thus, he announced the constitution of a strategic board with Autonomic governments, chambers of commerce, trade unions and businesspersons associations to unblock the situation.  

Puigdemont and Pedro Sánchez to meet on Tuesday

March 14, 2016 05:41 PM | ACN

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.

Puigdemont urges Spanish parties to have the “courage” to call for a referendum in Catalonia

March 1, 2016 08:15 PM | ACN

Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont, emphasised Catalonia’s “key role” in the formation of a new government in Madrid and stressed the need to “have serious dialogue between Catalonia and the Spanish State on a referendum, on independence” and ona potential separation from Spain rather than “having to continually deal with a government in denial on the issue, and using the Spanish constitutional court to throw obstacles in the way of proper democratic politics in Spain”. Puigdemont made this statement in an article published this Tuesday in ‘The Guardian’ and has also admitted to being frustrated about there not being a government in Madrid “able to engage in the negotiations Catalonia has been seeking”.

ALDE’s leaders visit President Puigdemont and the Catalan Minister for Foreign Affairs

February 29, 2016 03:29 PM | ACN

The Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont, received a representation from the Association of Liberal and Democrats of Europe (ALDE) group amid the controversy surrounding the recent suspension of the Catalan Ministry for Foreign Affairs by the Spanish Constitutional Court (TC). ALDE President and MEP Hans Van Baalen, who has repeatedly defended Catalonia’s right to decide its political future, was joined by ALDE’s general secretary, Jacob Moroza-Rasmussen and political adviser, Laura Laussade. They met President Puigdemont and the Catalan Minister for Foreign Affairs, former MEP Raül Romeva. Liberal party CDC’s spokeswoman and ALDE vice president, Marta Pascal, also attended the meeting, together with Spanish Parliament MP and the President of the Catalan foundation ‘Llibertat i Democràcia’, Jordi Xuclà.


Muriel Casals, one of the most representative figures of Catalonia's pro-independence movement, dies at 70

February 14, 2016 10:51 AM | ACN

Pro-independence cross-party list 'Junts Pel Sí' MP Muriel Casals died this Sunday at the age of 70. Former president of civil society association Òmnium Cultural, Muriel was one of the greatest exponents of the pro-independence movement in Catalonia. Recently, she was named president of the Study Committee for the Constitutive Process, responsible for setting the basis for Catalonia's roadmap towards independence. Together with Carme Forcadell, Parliament's President and former president of pro-independence grassroots organisation Catalan National Assembly, Muriel was responsible for the massive pro-independence rallies which have taken to the streets of Barcelona for the past six years. Casals had been in hospital since the 30th of January, after being hit by a bicycle in Barcelona. She failed to recover from a traumatic brain injury.

Hard Rock to invest €2.5 billion in BCN World casino, hotel and entertainment resort

February 10, 2016 07:19 PM | ACN

Hard Rock’s president Hamish Dodds and the company’s vice president, Nelson Parker, met this Wednesday with Catalan President Carles Puigdemont and the Catalan government’s vice president, Oriol Junqueras, in order to outline to them the multinational’s aim to set up a Tourist Integrated Centre in BCN World which would represent a 2.5-billion-euro investment. However, the BCN World project, which is set to be built on the 800 hectares surrounding the Port Aventura theme park (on the Costa Daurada, near Tarragona), is currently on ‘stand-by’. The government is trying to find the greatest consensus possible amongst the different parties and institutions involved and President Puigdemont announced this week that a consultation may be set up to get to know the locals’ opinions. 

First meeting between President Puigdemont and the Leader of the Opposition

January 27, 2016 07:22 PM | ACN

New Catalan President Carles Puigdemont and the recently named Leader of the Opposition Inés Arrimadas held this Wednesday their first official meeting. At a press conference directly after the meeting, the Catalan government’s spokeswoman, Neus Munté, expressed her hope that the differences regarding the roadmap towards independence, which is “a priority of the new government”, won’t obstruct “the daily management” of the citizens’ needs. Arrimadas described the meeting as “cordial and full of constructive proposals” but lamented that Puigdemont wouldn’t make “any move” to reform Catalonia’s funding system, one of Ciutadans’ core proposals. “If the government renounces negotiation, we will do so in the Spanish Parliament” she stated. 

First plenary session of the new Catalan Government

January 20, 2016 06:52 PM | ACN

New Catalan President Carles Puigdemont called for “permanent dialogue”between the different parliamentary groups in the chamber, besides the agreement between pro-independence forces cross-party list ‘Junts Pel Sí’and radical left CUP. During the first plenary session of the new Government, Puigdemont committed himself to putting Catalonia “on the verge of”independence within 18 months and doing it “with all the guarantees and without false moves”. The new Catalan President outlined two main objectives to be reached during this term of office. One is to maintain the services for all citizens in order to fight the consequences of the economic crisis and the other is to respond to the democratic mandate expressed in the 27-S Catalan Elections, which he defined as “clear and undeniable”. Puigdemont also explained the different departments of the new government, which he described as “renewed, reorganised and modern”.

Spain may also impugn the legality of the new Catalan Ministry for Foreign Affairs

January 15, 2016 04:06 PM | ACN

One day after the new Catalan executive was constituted, the Spanish government has announced that the State Attorney will analyse the competences of the new Catalan Ministry for Foreign Affairs, as it may violate some of the Spanish government’s functions. “We will not allow any action which could be contrary to the Constitution or to the laws, whatever it may be” warned current Spanish Government Vice President Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría. This warning comes after the Spanish Government confirmed that a report will be written analysing the taking office ceremony of new Catalan President Carles Puigdemont, during which Puigdemont didn’t mention Spain’s King nor the Spanish Constitution.

New Catalan Government set to work

January 14, 2016 05:49 PM | ACN / Sara Prim

The members of the new Catalan executive took office this Thursday, more than three months after the 27th of September Catalan Elections resulted in the victory of pro-independence forces. Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont, called them to be “aware” of the citizens’ assignment “without renouncing anything”. ERC’s leader Oriol Junqueras has been designed to assume the Vice presidency and led the Department of Economy and Tax Office, one of the key areas of the new executive. Another novelty is the creation of the department for Foreign Affairs, which will be led by former MEP and ‘Junts Pel Sí’s top member, Raül Romeva.