Wednesday, December 8

Oriol Junqueras: “If the PSOE drags its feet at the negotiating table, the international community will take note”


-Have you gotten used to freedom?

-You get used to good things quickly. Within a few minutes of leaving, you literally forget about jail, as if it never existed.

-The Prosecutor’s Office Supreme court, the one who judged him, pointed out that Juan Carlos I he had acted as commission agent. Do you see any grievances compared to the treatment given to the independence movement?

-We must aspire to a fair justice and it is evident this is not the case of the Spanish State or by chance. Note that any decision made by European judicial and political bodies has always been in the opposite direction to what the State has done.

“Linking the independence movement with Putin is a very relevant mistake. We need the support of Western democracies”


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-Do you consider that September 6 and 7, 2017 represent the Achilles heel of the story of independence, which has always been imagined as very democratic?

-On the contrary. What was done was to seek a legal measure that would underline the option of having a referendum, something that the Constitution does not prohibit. We tried in every possible way and the state always blocked it.

-The second meeting of the negotiating table is approaching and it seems that it generates controversy, within the independence movement itself.

-We have always defended that the solution to the conflict is multilateral, because it always affects many institutional levels. And the negotiation table is a first step. And if we go with enthusiasm, we can earn the trust of Catalan society and a part of the international community, which is committed to negotiation. When the international community addresses us, it does not tell us, for the moment, that it is willing to support independence, but it does say that it wants to accompany us in the fight against repression, in the case of the Assembly of Parliamentarians of the Council of Europe, and in the path of negotiation. And since international recognition is essential to us, it would be an unforgivable mistake to ignore these demands.

-Is the international community pending what happens at the negotiating table?

-There is a part of the community that, in many different ways, conveys its conviction that the table is a political success, because it allows us to face the political conflict through dialogue and negotiation. The more sincere we are in defending the table and the more others drag their feet [por el PSOE], we give more reasons to those who want to join us.

Oriol Junqueras. Ferran Nadeu


-Is linking independence to the Putin government a wise decision?

-It is a very relevant error, because our independence requires the recognition of Western democracies. Any approach to any state that does not meet Western democratic standards takes us far from our goal.

Gabriel Ruffian once said that the PSOE he only sits down to negotiate if he is forced to. Do you think that you will only agree at the negotiation table if you see that you have no other option?

-We have to accumulate enough democratic strength so that it does not have the possibility of not negotiating. We have to be stronger and weave complicities, also with international observers.

-This table has a horizon of two years. General elections are scheduled in 2023. The conjuncture does not help a pact. Will we be that year in a dead end?

-We will be based on how we have been able to defend the negotiating table and the attitude of other political agents. If we are the only ones who defend it with enthusiasm and others [el Gobierno del PSOE] drag their feet, it is evident that we have more possibilities of obtaining support inside and outside our country. Because it is what they ask us to try.

“We have to accumulate sufficient democratic force so that the State does not have the possibility of not negotiating”


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-The alternative to the PSOE-UP Government is one with the PP, is it strategic for ERC to help Sánchez stay in Moncloa?

-The only strategic thing for ERC is the progress and well-being of the citizens. In all that we can help that progress, we will help. But the PSOE must be aware that if its decisions are contrary to the democratic values ​​that we defend or are contrary to the rights and needs of the Catalan social majority, it is clear that we will not agree with them.

-If this table fails, is the objective of the independence movement to promote another table and thus ‘ad eternum’?

-No. The objective of the independence movement is independence and the table is the best way to advance in the construction of the political majorities and weave the essential complicities to reach it. And as long as we are convinced of it, it is clear that we will defend it. If someone wants to drag their feet, take responsibility. Because we are convinced that the majority of Catalan society and the majority of the international community will take notice.

-Do you detect a double discourse on the negotiating table in Junts depending on whether it is carried out from within the Government or from outside?

-I respect the internal debate of other forces and, since I believe that the best political decisions are those made by ERC, I believe that if everyone acted with the same conviction that Esquerra does, we would be much closer to independence than if others [por Junts] they opt for less effective paths.

“If everyone acted with the same conviction that Esquerra does, we would be much closer to independence than if others [por Junts] they opt for less effective paths “


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-You, Pere Aragonès, Raül Romeva and Joan Tardà have tried to get closer to the ‘comuns’. After your last position on the inadequacy of a referendum now, are you giving up?

-We address ourselves to political spaces, but, above all, to citizens who give them confidence. That each political space makes the decisions that it creates and that it is the citizens who grant their trust.

-Are you afraid that the ‘comuns’ are starting a path that could lead to the resignation of the defense of the right to self-determination, as the PSC did in 2012?

-I will always work so that the electorate gives their trust to those who work to put the choice of their future in the hands of the citizens. Most citizens prefer to trust those who trust them rather than those who deny them the option to vote for the future.

“Sánchez must be aware that if his decisions are contrary to the democratic values ​​that we defend, we will not agree with them”


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-Can debates like those at the airport give rise to non-coincident speeches between ERC and the Government?

-The coincidence is complete. We are about to improve the country’s infrastructures, but, at the same time, this must be fully compatible with improving environmental conditions. The Spanish Government made a proposal to crush the natural spaces of the Llobregat delta, knowing that this proposal will never have the endorsement of the European Commission. And he knows it because the PSOE has voted in favor of these directives. They are perfectly aware. And it does so with the hope of being able to blame the Catalan side, which we point to the existence of a false dilemma, that there is no extension of El Prat.

-How does this week’s controversy affect the negotiating table?

-The PSOE did not present an investment, but an electoral ‘marketing’ project. Given this, we will always unmask them and we will never play their game. The negotiating table is to resolve the political conflict. For other issues, such as infrastructures, there are already other spaces, such as the State-Generalitat commissions. Let’s not mix things up.


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