The day after the elections in Castilla y León have opened their doors to a very possible autonomous government between the PP and Vox, the president of the Generalitat, Pere Aragoneshas warned Pedro Sánchez that the situation can be repeated in La Moncloa if the Spanish Executive does not face with “courage” the “big issues” that remain to be resolved”, among which the political conflict with Catalonia stands out. Likewise, he has once again demanded “unity of action” between sovereignism and all those in favor of the “great consensus” of the country.
In a majestic setting such as the Oval Room of the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya (MNAC), Aragonès gave a lecture just one year after the elections to Parliament that would open the doors to the presidency, a position he would accept after more three months after an eternal and agonizing negotiation with Junts per Catalunya. In an act that has been attended by more than 400 guests (including members of the Government, political leaders such as the first secretary of the PSC and head of the opposition, Salvador Illa, or members of En Comú Podem and union representatives and economic and business organisations, among others), Aragonès delivered a speech that lasted almost an hour and in which he laid out the keys to his political project, defined as “the whole of Catalonia”.
To achieve this, he has appealed to the need to carry out a series of social and economic transformations pBut, above all, he has stated that Catalonia is currently “limited” by a Spanish State that “neither accepts nor respects the Catalan consensus”. Its horizon to go beyond these limits is to reach the maximum self-government, that is, the independent State, a point of arrival that previously requires the resolution of the current political conflict. This question has taken over almost all of the second part of Aragonès’s speech.
Force the state to move
Beyond insisting on the existence of a “broad, solid and transversal majority that wants to decide the political future of the country in a democratic referendum recognized by all parties”, Aragonés has highlighted that the negotiation with the State “has begun to move forward and has cited the granting of pardons to pro-independence prisoners as an example. Then, however, he has recognized that “it is evident that it is costing a lot to advance due to the lack of courage of the Spanish Governmentwho refuses to make a political proposal for Catalonia”.
“We must force the State Government to move so that it begins to speak”
In this sense, he has called for unity of action -he has made constant appeals to the need to recover the unity of the supporters of the “consensus” of Catalonia, such as the commitment to the referendum and self-determination, feminism, The urgency of advancing in the fight counts climate change or the importance of Catalan – because “the State Government will not move of its own volition. It will move because of our strength. (…) We must force the State Government to move and that start talking about proposals that really address the root of the problem. And these are “withdraw the cases against President Puigdemont and the rest of the exiled politicians” and, in particular, “find a democratic solution to the conflict”.
For the president of the Generalitat, if he does not do so, it will mean that the central government “has not understood that without a democratic and agreed resolution to the Catalan question, Spain has authoritarianism ahead of it, as history has shown us so many times.” And, more explicitly, he added that “if in the next Spanish legislature there is a government of the PP and Vox, it will not be because of the independence movement. It will be due to the lack of courage of the current State Government to tackle the big issues that remain to be resolved, including the political conflict with Catalonia”.
In fact, he has not hidden that the great challenge of the legislature is “to move forward and find a democratic way for the citizens to decide” and he has stressed that “we can discuss when, we can discuss how. The formulas and the conditioning factors. But what that we cannot accept as an answer is that there will never, never, never be a democratic way for us Catalans to decide our future”.
Dialogue with the deputies in Congress and in the European Parliament
Now, if the negotiation does not advance, as is possible, he warned that he plans to “activate all the pressure mechanisms to unblock the negotiation”, which previously implies “strengthening the Catalan position to force the State to move and make a proposal” . And, in his opinion, the way to get here would be to articulate a “unity of action” of a “modern and non-conformist Catalanism” that shares the great Catalan consensus. To do this, he explained that he will launch a dialogue with institutions and the main political, economic, social, civic and cultural actors to “share impressions and translate these consensuses into concrete political actions.”
It will start with the Catalan deputies in Congress and in the European Parliament, with the aim of shaking up the current scenario. At the moment, the unity of sovereignist action seems as far away as or more distant than a year ago and a resolution of the political conflict with the State that goes through an agreed referendum is not intuited in the short term either.