The separatists have lost their majority in Catalonia’s parliament

For the first time since 1980, various pro-independence parties missed out on an absolute majority in the Barcelona parliament. The socialists clearly won.

Catalonia’s separatists suffered an unprecedented defeat in parliamentary elections on Sunday. For the first time since 1980, various pro-independence parties in Spain’s conflict region missed out on an outright majority of seats in parliament in Barcelona. The Socialists led by leading candidate Salvador Illa won the election. With 42 seats, they are far from an absolute majority (68).

However, Illa could be elected head of government with the support of other left-wing parties – thus preventing fresh elections, as there is no apparent alternative to a left-wing government. According to preliminary official results, the conservative-liberal Junts party of Carles Puigdemont, the separatist leader living in exile in Belgium, came second behind the Socialists with 35 seats.

But the 61-year-old has no real chance of rallying enough support to form a government. The separatist Republican Left (ERC) finished third with 20 seats over previous regional leader Pere Aragones (13 less than before). The four separatist parties together won only 61 seats. They lost in 13.

Win for Sanchez

Analysts unanimously viewed the election result as a major victory for Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez’s left-wing central government in Madrid, 600 kilometers away. With his policy of reconciliation and his concessions, Sánchez has largely eased the conflict in Catalonia and completely taken the air out of the separatists – who traditionally consider Madrid “enemy number one” – a panel on RTVE television said. Sunday evening channel.

See also  Sahara dust is a nuisance for motorists

For Sánchez, the support of separatist parties in the national parliament in Madrid is crucial. This is why, among other peace measures, he promised amnesty to all “Catalanists” who had run afoul of the law over the independence movement. The law, heavily criticized by the conservative opposition, has yet to clear all parliamentary hurdles. But it could come into force as early as June – and could help fugitive Puigdemont return to Spain, where he has had to campaign in France.

“Forgiveness and reconciliation have also won today,” said journalist Juanma Lamet, whose employer, the prestigious newspaper “El Mundo,” is not one of the media close to Sanchez. Writer Berna Gonzalez Harper, a columnist for the pro-Sánchez magazine, El País, noted: “We all already knew that the processes (separatist attack) were over. Now even the separatists know.

Puigdemont was confident of victory

After an illegal independence referendum and a decision to secede from Spain, Catalonia plunged into chaos under Puigdemont in the fall of 2017. At the time, Puigdemont was able to flee abroad with other members of the government. Many comrades who stayed in the country were sentenced to up to 13 years in prison, but were later pardoned. Catalonia is still suffering from the consequences of a chaotic secessionist attempt – political instability and corporate and capital flight.

Exiled Carles Puigdemont hoped to recapture the government he lost in 2017 and return to power.ABA / AFP / Mathieu Rondel

In his victory speech, Illa continued the conciliatory trend of the Socialist leader Sánchez and promised: “No Catalan will be excluded from this new phase that begins today, so that he wants to become Spain’s leading economic region again.” To loud cheers from his supporters, Illa declared “For the first time, the Socialist Party has won the elections in Catalonia in terms of votes and seats!”

See also  Register quickly for the Jura Online special trade campaign

To be elected regional president in parliament in Catalonia, Illa needs above all the support of the republican left, which has yet to issue a clear statement. Party leader Aragonés initially said they would go to protest, but that would not rule out the tolerance of socialists.

“A New Era in Catalonia”

Whatever happened over the next few weeks, there was great joy in Madrid’s Moncloa government palace. “Historic result,” Sanchez wrote

The joy and optimism of the Socialists seems justified, and not just because they won nine seats. Critics from the conservative camp have repeatedly accused Sánchez of strengthening separatism and endangering Spanish unity with his minority government’s appeasement policy and reliance on separatists. Indeed, even after they began working with Sánchez, the separatists sought a green light from the central government for a legal referendum on independence. They will continue to do this in the future – but with a much weaker voice than before. (APA/dpa)

Read more about these topics:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *