Friday, April 4, 2014

Catalan MonitorNews Roundup

1. Defending Catalonia is defending democracy and freedom 

Spanish media are overwhelmingly not only anti-independence but anti-referendum as well. A recent study by news watchdog found out recently that the four biggest Madrid-based papers (El País, El Mundo, La Razón and ABC) have consistently published either negative or neutral news stories on the Catalan political process.

“69% of the published articles [between 2011-2013] had a negative connotation. Information with a positive point of view was limited to 1%. The remaining 30% couldn’t be categorized and were classified as neutral.”

In such a context, some articles in the Spanish press are noteworthy. It is the case of Suso de Toro’s recent op-ed:

Defending Catalonia in everyone’s interest
“Defending Catalonia is defending democracy and freedom. For them, and for the rest of us, I hope the [Spanish] government is forced to change its attitude and opens up a political and legal debate that ultimately allows the referendum. If this is not the case –which seems the likely outcome–, we wish the Catalans the best of luck, and understand that it is our duty to support their cause.

Catalan citizens are posing us all a democratic dilemma, and we must choose. They’re after all doing us a favour, and it’s about time to talk about what is really democracy and freedom. Without fear.”

2. Spanish Constitutional Court could recognise Catalan citizens’ right to decide  

Catalan Government’s legal services: the Constitutional Court backs a consultation vote if it’s “not a self-determination referendum”
“The legal services of the Catalan Government have issued a report analyzing last week’s Constitutional Court judgment on the Catalan Parliament’s Declaration of Sovereignty. The Constitutional Court rejected the idea that Catalonia was a “sovereign political and legal entity”, but at the same time it recognized that “Catalan citizens’ right to decide” fits into the Constitution. The Court rejected “the right to self-determination” but it recognized self-determination as a legitimate and therefore constitutional “political aspiration”.” – Catalan News Agency 

3. A European Nation Within Spain – The Wall Street Journal 

Andreu Mas-Colell, Catalonia’s minister of economy and knowledge, writes an op-ed at the WSJ in which he criticizes Spain’s opposition to a referendum on independence, and warns the EU that if Madrid doesn’t “roll back its re-centralization drive and open negotiations that can lead to a new arrangement”, the Catalan question will soon become an EU issue.

A European Nation Within Spain
“We are under serious attack. This attack was launched by Spain’s Popular Party, then in opposition, long before the economic crisis. After the center-right party came to office in 2011, it began passing legislation to re-centralize policy making across all fronts—economic, educational, health, welfare, public administration—under the cover of fighting the economic crisis and fostering efficiency.” – The Wall Street Journal

4. What is normal in a normal country?

Òmnium Cultural has published a new video of the campaign Un País Normal (A Normal Country): “¿Should Catalonia have right to vote in a democratic context?”