Where now for Catalonia? Following the dramatic events of 2017, when Catalonia held an independence referendum (which was declared illegal by the Constitutional Court of Spain and forcefully disrupted by Spanish police), what will 2018 bring? Has Catalan independence been thwarted by the arrest (or exile) of pro-independence political leaders?
Regional elections in December produced a majority for pro-independence parties (though the largest single party in the regional parliament is the anti-secession Citizens party). Nevertheless, independence seems like an unlikely prospect this year.
Since the December elections, several Catalan political and civic leaders have been languishing in pre-trial detention. They stand accused of rebellion or sedition, facing jail terms of up to 30 years. The former Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont, was quickly deposed by the central government and fled into self-imposed exile, and is currently facing extradition back to Spain from Germany.
What do our readers think? We had a comment sent in by Jaume, who argues: “Of course Catalonia should be independent. Catalan language and culture is being damaged seriously by Spanish nationalists.”
Should Catalonia be independent? We asked Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) from all sides of the political spectrum to stake out their positions on this question, and it’s up to YOU to vote for the policies you favour. See what the different MEPs have to say, then vote at the bottom of this debate for the one you most agree with! Take part in the vote below and tell us who you support in the European Parliament!
The independence of Catalonia cannot and should not be questioned. It is only a matter of time before the right of self-determination of the Catalan nation is fully realised. Today, the matter of an independent Catalan Republic is no longer a matter of the Madrid government. It is a serious challenge for the whole family of European nations and for EU values – democracy, citizens’ rights, and justice.
IMAGE CREDITS: (c) / BigStock – nito
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