Wednesday, May 18

Aragonès maintains his refusal to attend the Conference of Presidents despite the PSC’s request

The president of the Generalitat Pere Aragonès has not modified his decision to raise the president of the Government, Pedro Sánchez, and the rest of the regional presidents, who will meet next Sunday on the Canary island of La Palma. After this weekend the leader of the opposition and first secretary of the PSC, Salvador Illa, called on the head of the Government to back down and reconsider his position, the Government responded this Tuesday that the president is not considering going because At the moment there is no news in the meeting called.

“If it were the case that the forecast changed and it was a useful and practical meeting, where the different consequences that the war in Ukraine, issues such as refugees or energy, were addressed, it would be time to rethink it,” he said. the spokeswoman for the Government, Patricia Plaja, who then assured that, “today, none of this is planned”. “It is not a no for the no but, as we have already stated, we will not attend a meeting that is not useful and practical”, she has riveted.

The incorporation of the Govern de Aragonès into the Conferences of Autonomous Presidents is an objective that the Socialists have been pursuing for a long time, since they understand that it is one of the last gestures that are missing to be able to consider that the relations between the Generalitat and the rest of the State institutions is fully normalized. Despite this, Republicans still have misgivings, considering that these types of meetings are not very executive and have little content beyond photography.

Aragonès and his team, in fact, even considered going to the first meeting called in La Palma last December, which ended up being postponed several times, and even the Minister of the Presidency came to participate in a preparatory meeting for the agenda. However, the initiative finally ran aground, after considering that the Government’s condition that the agenda introduce a discussion on the possible extension of the COVID fund for the autonomies was not met.

On this occasion, the request of the socialists brandished, in addition to the institutional responsibility to which they always appeal, the extraordinary circumstances of the war in Ukraine. According to Illa, the next autonomic conclave should serve to talk about the Ukrainian refugees who come to Spain, as well as the economic effects that the conflict may have and that are already being noticed. “Catalonia cannot leave the chair empty. Never, but less so at this time,” added the deputy first secretary of the PSC, Lluïsa Moret.

This Monday, however, both ERC and Junts rejected that the president had to change his position, alleging that there are already bilateral bodies to deal with these issues. The Junts spokeswoman, Elsa Artadi, went further and described Illa’s words as taking advantage of the crisis in Ukraine to “blackmail” the Government. “The president must go to meetings where things are decided, not formal meetings that serve only for Pedro Sánchez to have photos,” she assured Artadi.

1,200 Ukrainian refugees in Catalonia

Precisely this Tuesday the Government has given one of the first balance figures on the arrival of Ukrainian refugees in Catalonia. At the moment there are about 1,200 people who have arrived fleeing the war, a figure that is expected to increase in the coming days. The Minister of Equality, Tania Verge, has reported that for the moment the Generalitat has made some 2,000 reception places available to this group.

The Government has also called for citizens who wish to collaborate to do so through professional institutions and organizations that operate on the ground, based on direct contributions, and not through personal initiative. These organizations, the spokesperson stressed, are the ones that can identify and detect “the most urgent needs”, so they are the ones that can best guide the type of aid that is claimed.