Tuesday, May 17

Illa warns that the credibility of Aragonès is in danger if he does not open the dialogue in Catalonia

The leader of the PSC, Salvador Illa, has warned the president of the Generalitat, Pere Aragonès, that his “credibility” runs the risk of being “irremediably damaged” if he does not activate the table of Catalan parties that the socialists and ERC agreed on in the framework of the investiture of Pedro Sánchez. “I think he is in stoppage time. His credibility could be seriously damaged if this is not started”, the head of the opposition in Catalonia has maintained in an interview with EFE.

Aragonès warns Sánchez that “eternalizing the negotiations” sows doubts about the dialogue

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The notice of the head of the opposition to Aragonès occurs in parallel to the one sent by Junts to the president, although that of Puigdemont’s goes in the opposite direction. Junts has raised the tone against the president and has demanded that he justify why he maintains the dialogue table with the central government, the main bet of the Republicans to overcome the political conflict after the sovereignty process and which Junts views with skepticism.

For his part, the former Minister of Health has highlighted that he was part of the socialist delegation that negotiated the investiture of Sánchez with ERC and that he agreed to activate a dialogue process “with three legs”: the State-Generalitat Bilateral Commission, the dialogue between governments and a table of Catalan parties. Both the Bilateral Commission and the dialogue table, he recalled, have met since Aragonès became president of the Generalitat, but the same has not happened with the Catalan table.

From his point of view, summits such as those that the president has called with the Catalan parliamentary groups -all except Vox- to address the measures to be taken in the face of the social and economic crisis derived from the war in Ukraine are positive, but they are not equivalent to space of political dialogue demanded by the PSC.

For the first secretary of the PSC, it is essential that “things be called by their name” and that a table of parties be structured that meets regularly and debates in a “serene and slow” manner on issues such as the need to increase social use of Catalan or the relationship between Catalonia and Spain.

“It can be said that the table between governments has met little, but at least it has met”, has sentenced the socialist leader, who has refused to comment on when the next meeting of this negotiation space should be.

Although there is still no date for an appointment that was scheduled for “beginning of the year”, Illa has denied that the Government of PSOE and United We Can have put the Catalan folder in a drawer, although she has admitted that attention is now focused on the crisis caused by the Russian invasion in Ukraine.

The leader of the PSC has highlighted that the citizenry has also diverted its focus of attention: according to the latest barometer of the Center for Opinion Studies of the Generalitat, the main concerns of the Catalans are unemployment, inflation and the functioning of the economy.

Regarding the Catalan conflict, Illa has claimed that the only possible way to channel it is dialogue and has warned that the formations or political leaders that move away from it “will be moving away from Catalonia”. Following this logic, he has hoped that JxCat “does well” in its congress scheduled for June and July and that the internal struggle between the different families is settled in favor of the most pragmatic theses.

“It is good for Catalonia that there is an enlightening process”, resolved Illa, who has expressed her “maximum respect” towards the party chaired by Carles Puigdemont. Regardless of the outcome of the conclave, he has been convinced that the PSC and Junts will continue to reach agreements in city councils and supra-municipal entities after the 2023 local elections: “We are always willing to talk to everyone”.

And he has sent a message addressed to the former president of the Generalitat Quim Torra, who continues to advocate unilateralism: “You have to be very careful when giving recipes and advice, when in the time you ruled you have not done any of this ”.