Pro-independence associations to demonstrate in 5 different locations on Catalonia’s National Day
The Catalan National Assembly (ANC) and Òmnium Cultural, the two main civil organisations behind the massive pro-independence demonstrations held since 2012 on Catalonia’s National Day, have presented their project for the upcoming mobilisation on the 11th of September. The new campaign, called ‘A punt’ (‘We are ready’), aims to mobilise Catalans in five different cities all over the territory: Barcelona; Salt, in Girona; Berga, in Central Catalonia; Lleida; and Tarragona. The presidents of both organisations invited all those who support holding a referendum on independence to join the demonstration and explained that the motto ‘A punt’ symbolises two things; that Catalonia “is ready to achieve the republic” and that the citizens have already reached “the final stage” of the pro-independence process.
Barcelona (CNA).- Catalans will hit the streets again to celebrate Catalonia’s National Day and reclaim Catalonia’s independence on the 11th of September; as has happened for the last four years, when millions of people pacifically demonstrated in Barcelona. The two main civil organisations behind these massive mobilisations, the Catalan National Assembly (ANC) and Òmnium Cultural, presented this Tuesday their programme for the upcoming 11th of September, with demonstrations to take place in five different cities all over the territory: Barcelona; Salt, in Girona; Berga, in Central Catalonia; Lleida; and Tarragona. Under the motto ‘A punt’ (‘We are ready’), the demonstration aims to symbolise two things; that Catalonia “is ready to achieve the republic” and that the citizens have already reached “the final stage” of the pro-independence process, the presidents of both organisations explained.
ANC’s President, Jordi Sànchez and Òmnium Cultural’s, Jordi Cuixart, admitted that they would like for the upcoming mobilisation on the 11th of September “to be the last one” but they didn’t venture to say if this will actually be the case. Even so, they have called for the demonstrations to be “a proof of unity” to “culminate” the pro-independence process.
The organisers plan that there will be three main marches which will arrive at the five different locations and do so by different means, including by ship, train, and hot-air balloon, amongst others. “The aim is to show the world that we are a country in motion”, explained ANC’s head of mobilisations, Oriol Codina. In the different places in Barcelona, Berga, Salt, Lleida and Tarragona where the demonstrators are expected to gather, the same concrete action will have to be carried out at 17:14 – symbolising 1714, the year in which Catalonia was defeated by Bourbon troops and lost its institutions.
Although Codina didn’t advance further details on what this action will be, he assured that it will be related to the motto ‘A punt’ and will show that the pro-independence process “has reached a meeting point and that it is ready to culminate in a republic”.
The symbolism behind the 5 locations chosen
Both organisations have justified the decision to extend the mobilisation to four other cities beyond Barcelona. “We want to make this National Day a decentralised one and involve the whole territory”, they explained. Moreover, the cities have not been chosen randomly but according to the values that the new republic should represent.
Salt will symbolise “the republic of solidarity and diversity, the country for all of us, the republic of social justice and respect for immigration and coexistence”. Indeed, Salt is one of the cities with the highest figures of immigration and has been an example of coexistence so far.
Berga, in Central Catalonia, is the city where ‘La Patum’ takes place, a cultural festival which has its roots in the medieval period and which was declared Oral and Immaterial Heritage of Mankind by UNESCO in 2005. Thus, Berga will represent “culture and the roots of a vibrant identity, which is diverse and constantly under construction”.
Tarragona will symbolise the need for “networking, future and economic processes, linking it to its lack of investment and its historic deficit regarding infrastructure”.
“The territorial balance, the landscape and agriculture” will be represented by Lleida.
Finally, Barcelona will symbolise “freedom, the historic headquarters of sovereignty and the future capital city of the Catalan Republic”
First demonstration with a pro-independence majority in the Parliament
ANC’s President, Jordi Sànchez, emphasised that “this will be the first Catalan National Day with a pro-independence majority in the Parliament and in the Government, which has emerged from the ballot boxes and with a pro-independence mandate”. “We are ready because we have those institutions we aimed to have a year ago”, he added “this will be the first Catalan National Day on which the institutions will have a majority to materialise the mandate they were entrusted with”.
A “claim for unity”
Moreover, Sànchez aims for the mobilisation to be a “claim for unity”. “It will represent the unity that the sovereigntist movement is calling for at the moment, the unity which is being demanded and which is required to culminate the process towards independence”, he stated.
ANC’s President also assured that he is “convinced” that citizens “will take part in the mobilisations and fill the five locations”. “It will be a moment when the world will look at us once again and we are sure that the citizens are going to hit the streets again” and, as occurred in the last five years, “will ask pacifically and with dignity to build a new republic”. Sànchez insisted that “everybody is invited, since everybody is indispensable”.
Call for pro-referendum parties to join the mobilisation
In this vein, both organisations have invited all those political forces which support the idea of holding a referendum on independence and those who condemn the Spanish state’s attitude regarding Catalonia’s political process to join the mobilisation. Òmnium Cultural’s President, Jordi Cuixart, called for “all democrats in Catalonia” to take part in the 11th of September’s events. He particularly welcomed “all democrats who understand that the Spanish state is giving up on defending Catalans’ interests and this is an anti-democratic action” and that it is “cutting the citizens’ social and national rights”.
“Independence is an instrument not a goal and therefore we call on all democrats to take part in the demonstration”, he added.