FC Barcelona will support vote on Catalan independence

May 10, 2017 03:59 PM | ACN

FC Barcelona supports holding a vote on Catalan independence by joining the National Pact for the Referendum (PNR). The club announced their decision through a press release before their game in La Liga on Saturday. One of the first people to congratulate this decision was Catalonia’s president, Carles Puigdemont, who wrote the following in a tweet: “democracy joins forces”. The National Pact for the Referendum is a campaign to collect signatures from institutions, organizations, elected representatives, and private individuals, both within and outside of the country in support of holding a referendum on the political future of Catalonia. The group is comprised of the Catalan government, political parties, and organizations.

Spanish diplomats warned French journalist against moderating an event about Catalonia

April 26, 2017 10:51 AM | ACN

Spanish diplomats tried to pressure the moderator of an event with former Catalan president, Artur Mas, in Brussels. The correspondent from the French newspaper Libération, Jean Quatremer, admitted on Tuesday that when he agreed to present the event with the former Catalan president, he received some “news from Madrid”. “They called to ask me why I had accepted, and if I was sure about what I was getting into, and obviously I was,” said the correspondent, stressing that he is not in favor of independence. During the conference, Mas defended the demands for a referendum in Catalonia and said regretfully that “the only” dialogue that the Spanish state offers to the Catalan people is with “the judges”.

British MPs defend Catalonia’s democratic right to call a referendum

March 16, 2017 06:07 PM | ACN / Sara Prim

An ‘Early Day Motion’ on Catalonia’s right to hold a referendum has been presented this Thursday to the House of Commons. Titled ‘Democracy in Catalonia’ the petition calls on the British Government “to declare its adherence” to the right of “democratically elected parliamentarians to hold a referendum” in accordance with “the needs and wishes of their people”. Moreover, the petition reports that former Catalan President, Artur Mas, former Vice President, Joana Ortega and former Catalan Minister for Education, Irene Rigau have been “levied heavy fines” and banned from public office for allowing the 9-N symbolic vote on independence in 2014.  The signers, SNP MP George Kerevan, Northern Ireland SNDP MP Mark Durkan, and Plaid Cymru’s Hwyel Williams also note that 85% of Catalans, and 83 of the 135 Members of the Parliament of Catalonia support the option to vote democratically on Catalonia's constitutional future”.

Romeva at Westminster: “There is more interest in discussing the Catalan question here than in Spain”

March 15, 2017 12:32 PM | ACN / Sara Prim

The All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) created in the British Parliament was officially inaugurated this Tuesday by the Catalan Minister for Foreign Affairs, Raül Romeva.  “This is what we would like other parliaments, such as the Spanish, to do,” Romeva told the press before entering the Committee Room. “Sometimes, there is more interest in discussing the Catalan question here than in Spain,” he added. SNP MP and Chairman of the APPG on Catalonia, George Kerevan admitted being “surprised” by the “large amount of people” who attended the presentation, including not only MPs and Peers but also “academics and many representatives from different sectors in the United Kingdom”. He lamented that the Catalan process hasn’t even “reached the negotiations table” and gave credit to the UK, which allowed the Scottish referendum “as a good example of dialogue”.

Mas, Ortega and Rigau could show the world “how weak democracy is in Spain”

March 15, 2017 08:44 AM | ACN

Catalan Government Spokeswoman, Neus Munté, referred this Tuesday to the Constitutional Court’s decision to ban from public office the political figures responsible for the 9-N symbolic vote on independence, which took place in 2014. According to Munté, sentencing former Catalan President Artur Mas, former Vice President Joana Ortega and former Catalan Minister for Education Irene Rigau for allowing the non-binding consultation “confirm the Spanish State’s absolute lack of willingness to find a political solution” to Catalonia’s aspirations. However, far from “disqualifying” them, Munté assured that the Government “counts on” the three summonsed “to explain” to the world “how weak democracy is in Spain".

Puigdemont: “Spanish democracy has gotten sick”

February 8, 2017 01:02 PM | ACN

Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont, opened this Wednesday’s plenary session in the Parliament and commented on the trial over the 9-N symbolic vote on independence, which is taking place this week. “Spanish democracy has gotten sick” he said and accused the Spanish State of taking former Catalan President, Artur Mas and former Catalan Minsters, Irene Rigau and Joana Ortega before the court “without blushing” in what he considered “a political trial”. According to Puigdemont, Mas, Rigau and Ortega “are guilty of believing in the Parliament and listening to the citizens” and compared the trial with the “impunity” with which recent events such as former Spanish Minister for Home Affairs, Jorge Fernández Diaz’s smear conspiracy against pro-independence parties seem to be tolerated. Puigdemont also criticised Spanish President, Mariano Rajoy’s willingness to dialogue with US President, Donald Trump and other leaders in Europe and Latin America but not with Catalonia.

‘Love Democracy’, the pro-independence associations’ campaign to support summonsed politicians

February 3, 2017 07:26 PM | ACN / Sara Prim

The main pro-independence civil society organisations in Catalonia, the Catalan National Assembly (ANC), Òmnium Cultural, the Association of Municipalities for Independence (AMI) and the Catalan Association of Municipalities (ACM) have called for mobilisation once again. Under the motto ‘Love Democracy’ the associations aim to show the citizens’ support for former Catalan President, Artur Mas, who faces trial next Monday for allowing the 9-N symbolic vote on independence in 2014, together with former Catalan Ministers Joana Ortega and Irene Rigau. So far, nearly 30,000 people have joined the initiative and are expected to fill Barcelona’s Lluís Companys Avenue, where Catalonia’s Supreme Court is located and where the summonsed will have to testify for alleged disobedience and perversion of justice. 

Government to hold seminar on international examples of constitution writing process

February 3, 2017 06:34 PM | ACN

The Catalan Department for Foreign Affairs, International Relations and Transparency will promote a seminar to share the main experiences of participative democracy worldwide. The initiative will start on the 9th of March at Barcelona’s Centre of Contemporary Culture (CCCB) and will consist of eight sessions focused on the constitutive process which took place in Scotland, Ireland, Iceland, Ecuador, Bolivia and Chile. According to the Department, the aim of these sessions is to share recent experiences which took place in different countries in Europe and Latin America where citizen participation was not only innovative but key in the elaboration of new constitutions. The seminar will include the presence of international professors and experts in this field.