MATTERS are moving apace in the case of the possibility of independence for Catalonia with a declaration on October 27 for a debate in the local parliament to commence secession from Spain, and an unplanned response from Prime Minister Rajoy that afternoon.
The two pro-independence groups in the new Catalan parliament, Junts Pel Sí (Together For Yes) and the CUP issued a two-page document containing nine points for debate and approval, beginning with a request to recognise the ‘democratic mandate’ voters gave the newly elected regional MPs at the Catalan elections on September 27:
The main thrust of the document, not unexpectedly is the call for recognition that the elections allow for the parliament ‘To solemnly declare the beginning of the process of the creation of an independent Catalan state, in the form of a republic.’
In his long response, Mr Rajoy made his government’s position quite clear by saying “This initiative cannot be described as anything more than an act of provocation by those who mean to break the law—that’s simply what it is—because they know the law is not on their side.
“The government I lead guarantees, and will guarantee, that they will not achieve any of their aims, and that this resolution proposal, if approved by the Catalan parliament, will not have any effect at all.
“The state is not going to renounce the use of all of the political and legal mechanisms that, in defence of the sovereignty of the Spanish people and of the general interest of Spain, are attributed to it by the Constitution and under law.
“Those who wish to separate and divide Catalonia from Spain must know that they will not succeed, and they are not going to do so because it is against the majority of Catalans and Spaniards as a whole. They are faced with the law and a government ready to enforce it.
“I want to send a message of calm to all Spaniards, and very especially to Catalans. As long as I am Prime Minister, Spain will continue to be a nation of free and equal citizens. Justice will prevail over injustice and everyone—everyone, I repeat—is subject to the law and the rulings of the courts.”
With a general election due December 20, it remains to be seen whether the decision by the Catalan parliament to push for secession so quickly will work for or against them, as the PP may see a groundswell of support from those across the country who are opposed to independence.