Pro-independence parties ready to disobey Spain's resolution

August 1, 2016 06:31 PM | ACN

The Spanish Constitutional Court (TC) decision to suspend Catalonia’s roadmap towards independence, which was ratified last week by the Catalan Chamber, won’t stop the launching of the Constitutive Process of the Catalan Republic. This is what radical left pro-independence CUP stated this Monday. Moreover, Regarding the possibility that the TC may suspend the Parliament’s President, Carme Forcadell as well, CUP MP Anna Gabriel warned that this would represent “a point of no return”for the Spanish state and that this would require “a countrywide response”. “We will remain faithful to the Parliament and if we have to disobey we will do so”, stated pro-independence left wing ERC’s spokesman in the Spanish Parliament Joan Tardàand lamented the “authoritarian way”and the “judicial violence”used by the Spanish state.

Spanish Constitutional Court suspends pro-independence roadmap

August 1, 2016 02:47 PM | ACN

The magistrates of the Spanish Constitutional Court (TC) held this Monday an emergency meeting and unanimously agreed to accept the appeal presented by Spain’s executive, which urged to suspend Catalonia’s pro-independence roadmap, the next steps of which were approved last week by the Parliament. By the end of August the TC will decide if it will apply prison charges to the Parliament’s President, Carme Forcadell. The 72 pro-independence MPs in the Catalan Chamber and the Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont, have expressed their solidarity with Forcadell and insisted that the decision to pass the conclusions of the Committee to Study the Constitutive Process was not hers but the democratic and majoritarian will of Catalans. 

Catalan Government: “We won’t move from our deeply democratic way”

July 29, 2016 06:39 PM | ACN

Catalan Government Spokeswoman, Neus Munté responded this Friday to Spain’s decision to take the Parliament’s approval of the pro-independence roadmap before the Spanish Constitutional Court (TC). Munté considered it “unacceptable” that the Parliament’s President, Carme Forcadell, could be suspended and insisted that the Catalan executive “won’t move” from its “deeply democratic way”. She insisted that Catalonia’s roadmap towards independence “remains intact” and stated that “no court could be higher than the democratic will democratically expressed” in the 27-S Catalan elections. “It would be unprecedented that the president of Parliament could be suspended from office by a court decision”, she stated.

Spain wants to claim criminal liability against Parliament’s President

July 29, 2016 02:25 PM | ACN

The Spanish Government will urge the Spanish Constitutional Court (TC) to allow it to claim criminal liability against the Parliament’s President, Carme Forcadell, for having disobeyed the TC’s rulings. The current Spanish Cabinet, which met this Friday, also agreed to impede Forcadell from launching the pro-independence roadmap approved on Wednesday by the Parliament. In particular, the Spanish executive calls for the TC to “proceed to consider the witness of particulars in order to claim criminal liability against the Parliament’s President for disobeying the rulings of the TC, which all public servants are compelled to obey”. The petition also aims to expressly ban the Parliament’s President, the Parliament Bureau and the Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont, from promoting any initiative in relation to the pro-independence process. 

Spain responds to Parliament’s vote on pro-independence roadmap by appealing to the TC again

July 27, 2016 07:10 PM | ACN

The Spanish Government has again turned to the court, this time to respond to this Wednesday’s approval of the pro-independence roadmap by the Catalan Chamber. Current Spanish President, Mariano Rajoy, has already ordered the State Attorney to write a document which will be approved this Friday by the Spanish Cabinet. The Spanish Constitutional Court (TC) repeatedly insisted that any declaration or action towards the constitution of the Catalan Republic will be invalidated, since this would have emerged from the pro-independence proposal agreed by the Parliament on the 9th of November and which is considered unconstitutional by the TC. Rajoy also called the other main leaders in the Spanish Parliament to communicate to them his decision.

Parliament approves a “democratic unilateral mechanism” to split from Spain

July 27, 2016 06:56 PM | ACN / Sara Prim

The conclusions of the Committee to Study the Constitutive Process, which worked to establish the next steps to take in Catalonia’s roadmap towards independence, have been approved this Wednesday by the Catalan Chamber. The majority of 72 pro-independence MPs from governing cross-part list ‘Junts Pel Sí’ and radical left CUP supported the conclusions, including one of the most controversial points: launching a “democratic unilateral mechanism which will allow the calling of the Constitutive Assembly”, the body which will be responsible for writing the Catalan Constitution. Thus, the Parliament has ignored the Spanish Constitutional Court (TC)’s warnings that called for impeding any action regarding the constitutive process of a Catalan republic. Spanish Unionist ‘Ciutadans’ and the Conservative People’s Party (PP) described the vote as a “farce” and showed their opposition by leaving the Parliament.  

Next steps on pro-independence roadmap put to vote, despite TC claims of illegality

July 27, 2016 12:51 PM | ACN

The Parliament finally accepted to include the conclusions of the Committee to Study the Constitutive Process, which established the next steps in the pro-independence process, in this Wednesday’s agenda. The decision comes amid controversy over the possible suspension by the Spanish Constitutional Court (TC), which claimed that the points agreed by the Committee emerged from the 9-N agreed proposal, which was declared unconstitutional. “We are not doing anything illegal” stated Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont, adding that he considered it “absolutely normal” for the Parliament to discuss the conclusions. In a similar vein, the pro-independence forces, governing cross-party list ‘Junts Pel Sí’ and radical left CUP stated that they are due to the democratic mandate which emerged from the 27-S elections.

Spain's “linguistic discrimination” debated in the European Committe on Civil Liberties for the first time

March 17, 2016 07:42 PM | ACN

The situation of the Catalan language in the Spanish state has been debated, for the first time ever, in the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs of the European Parliament. This Thursday the European Language Equality Network (ELEN), Europe’s only international civil society organisation dedicated to the protection and promotion of regional, minority and endangered languages, warned of the “outrageous” discrimination regarding the use of Catalan in many spheres of public life in Spain. ELEN’s general secretary, Davyth Hicks, presented the latest report published by ‘Plataforma per la Llengua’ a non-governmental organisation that works to promote Catalan as a tool for social cohesion and stated that Spain is “violating the Charter of Fundamental Rights” and, therefore, called for proceedings against Spain for “linguistic discrimination”.

The Committee to study the constitutive process of a potential Catalan Republic set to work

March 8, 2016 07:57 PM | ACN

The committee designed to study the constitutive process which has to put in place the basis of a future Catalan Republic has set to work. This Monday, pro-independence cross party ‘Junts Pel Sí’ MP Lluís Llach took responsibility at the head of the committee, after his predecessor, Muriel Casals, died from a head injury after suffering an accident in the beginning of February. The pro-independence parties in the Parliament considered it “indispensable” to set up a debate on the future Catalan constitution. “It will never be prohibited”, stated alternative left coalition ‘Catalunya Sí que es Pot’ MP Joan Coscubiela. The committee starts its work amid warnings from the Spanish executive, which ultimately took this committee before the Spanish Constitutional Court (TC) to evaluate its legality and potential future suspension.

Spain takes the committee to study the constitutive process of a potential Catalan Republic before the court

March 3, 2016 06:44 PM | ACN

The Spanish Constitutional Court (TC) accepted the appeal presented by the Spanish executive against the Parliament’s committee to study the constitutive process of a potential Catalan Republic. According to current Spanish vice president, Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría, the Catalan Government’s first aim was to make it “a legislative” committee but they decided to turn it into a “study committee” in view of its possible unconstitutionality. Furthermore, Spain’s state attorney believes that by launching this committee the Parliament would not be fulfilling the TC sentence which suspended the pro-independence proposal approved in the Catalan chamber on the 9th of November.

The Parliament’s Bureau approves the processing of the three laws to starting the disconnection process from Spain

March 1, 2016 03:14 PM | ACN

The Parliament’s Bureau accepted this Tuesday the application handed over by the two main pro-independence forces in the Parliament, cross-party list ‘Junts Pel Sí’ and radical left CUP, which requests the creation of three laws: one on social measures, a second on the Catalan tax office and a third on the legal transition. Representatives from the Parliament’s Bureau assured that starting the processing of the three laws complies with the “formal requirements” established by the Catalan Chamber, although the Parliament’s legal services advised them against doing so. Anti-Catalan nationalism ‘Ciutadans’, the Catalan Socialist Party (PSC) and the Catalan People’s Party (PPC) have urged the Bureau to reconsider the creation of the framework for the three disconnection laws to be launched, as they consider them not to be a project of consensus.

MEPs visit the Ebro Delta to check whether Spain’s National Water Plan infringes European regulations

February 8, 2016 07:55 PM | ACN

Six MEPs from the Committee on Petitions visited the Ebro Delta, in Catalonia’s southern region of Tarragona, to meet the several petitioners who have claimed that Spain’s new National Water Plan (NWP) may infringe the EU Water Framework Directive. Environmentalists say one of Europe's most important wetland areas is under threat as Spain’s new Plan aims to reduce the river’s flow to 3,000 cubic hectometres per year and add 465,000 new hectares of irrigated lands to an already existing one million hectares, which will also contribute to cutting the sediment level dramatically. Besides the risk to the delta’s survival, the Platform for the Defence of the Ebro Delta (PDE) are worried that ultimately these waters could be transferred to other, drier regions of Spain. The visit of the EU delegation comes after 50,000 demonstrators took to the streets of Amposta in Catalonia on Sunday to protest against the plans.

Barça and International Olympic Committee to assist young people in Africa until 2016

December 5, 2013 02:11 PM

FC Barcelona Foundation, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the Olympafrica Foundation signed an agreement on Wednesday to extend the ‘FutbolNet’ pilot project in 34 African countries. 100,000 African children will benefit from the project each year. The agreement extends the initiative until at least 2016, after an initial pilot experience that run from April to June 2013. It is the first time that the IOC has ever signed an alliance with a sports club’s foundation. The Olympafrica FutbolNet Cup is a series of football tournaments with values based on the methodology used by the FC Barcelona Foundation.

Catalan success at the London Olympics marred by Spanish Government’s lack of support

August 14, 2012 03:29 PM | CNA / Laura Pous / David Tuxworth

Ivan Tibau, the Catalan Government’s Secretary of Sport, emphasises the “great effort” made by the Catalan Excutive to help the High Performance Sports Centre (CAR) and Catalan athletes compete in London 2012. The elite training centre did not receive funding from the Spanish Government for the last two years, amounting to €10.7 million. The Catalan Executive advanced the payment to keep the CAR running. Athletes trained at CAR made up 65% of medals won by the Spanish team at the London 2012 Olympics. Despite this, the Spanish Olympic Committee “closed the door” to the Catalan Government in regards to London 2012.

The European Commission recognises ‘Barcelona Activa’ as the best European initiative developing entrepreneurship

May 26, 2011 02:31 PM | CNA / Gaspar Pericay Coll

‘Barcelona Activa’ is Barcelona City Council’s agency for local development. Its main activities are promoting business and employment creation. ‘Barcelona Activa’ wins the Grand Jury Prize of the 2011 European Enterprise Awards, organised by the European Commission, the European Presidency and the Committee of the Regions.