The political summit for Catalonia’s right to self-determination decided to include civil society

08.05.2013

Source: Catalan News Agency

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The political summit organised by the President of the Catalan Government and leader of the Centre-Right Catalan Nationalist Coalition (CiU), Artur Mas, to discuss ways to obtain the right to self-determination ended without a major agreement. The participants only agreed to widen the process by including civil society in the debate, which at the moment is mostly undertaken at a Parliamentary level, despite last September’s demonstration supporting Catalonia’s independence from Spain was organised by civil society and 1.5 million citizens participated in the march. All the parties that support self-determination, including the Catalan Socialist Party (PSC), participated in the meeting, which took place on Monday at the Generalitat Palace in Barcelona. In addition the Catalan Government, the four Provincial Councils and a representation from Catalonia’s town halls were also present. The participating political parties could not agree on a plan to organise a self-determination vote. The CiU, the Left-Wing Catalan Independence Party (ERC) and the radical left-wing and independence party CUP would like to combine the organisation of the self-determination vote with the creation of state structures. In addition, the ERC and the CUP are in a rush to organise the vote, since they believe “the country cannot wait any longer”, as have said in several occasions. The PSC and the Catalan Green Socialist and Communist Coalition (ICV-EUiA) asked the self-determination process to remain neutral regarding the vote results and they also refused to identify self-determination as a solution to Catalonia’s economic crisis. However, all the parties and institutions present agreed to include business associations, trade unions and social and cultural associations in the process, in order to make it participatory and driven by society. All these political, institutional, economic and social agents will come up with a National Pact on the Self-Determination Right, which would define a plan towards the organisation of a referendum. (read more)