A non-binding public consultation on Catalan independence, which was due to take place in Arenys de Munt this September 13th has been banned. A judge in Barcelona accepted the Madrid government’s argument that only they have the authority to operate public consultations. The court also ruled that a town may not have a consultation that includes issues that are not wholly municipal, and that the Ajuntament (town hall) was too involved in the event, which is also illegal. The pretend referendum is being organised by MAPA, the Arenys group for Catalan self-determination (not by the town hall).
The vote gained widespread attention because fascist throwbacks, the Falange de las JONS announced a plan to protest against any movement for Catalan independence. In Arenys de Munt. On the 13th. Because that wouldn’t be remotely confrontational.
Anyway, what we see here is further use of the PSOE’s favourite tactic for disallowing democratic processes it feels it cannot control. The government typically waits until around a week before the event in question and then deploys its legal arguments, knowing that an appeal would be costly and would have to be done quickly. They did the same thing with their attempted criminalisation of Iniciativa Internacionalista and they’ve dealt with Basque political parties in a similar way.
As one commentator has asked: why all this effort to not hear what people want?
Organisers of the consultation have put a brave face on it: they reckon that a postal vote is still permitted. This story ain’t over yet.
11 thoughts on “Arenys de Munt independence ‘consultation’ banned”
Isn’t it time for Barcelona council to support a referendum backing the public use of Spanish, and threatening UDI from Cataloonia if it is not granted?
Organise it, Trev, and I’ll support your right to hold a referendum doomed to provoke acute narcolepsy wherever it’s flyposted.
I’m lost! Who or what is UDI?? and also, what does Trevor mean by PUBLIC USE OF SPANISH? I never noticed this wasnt the case! If you dont like Catalan there are plenty of countries in the world where Spanish is spoken…sad all of them are in Latin America or west of the River Ebro…
What we need is a referendum to have Catalan as the only OFFICIAL language in Catalonia,,, the you can use Spanish as much as you want…but making things clear first!
The consultation (not referendum) has been temporarily suspended, not banned. The judge has called the state and Arenys town hall’s counsels to court on Monday to take statements from them and decide how to proceed.
It is in fact the town hall’s minor participation in the organisation that is being questioned by the judge, as the poll is being organised by a private association. The consultation is thus likely to go ahead.
BTW, for Toni,
UDI stands for Unilateral Declaration of Independence. Since the ‘parent’ state is usually in disagreement with declarations of independence, most are in fact ‘unilateral’. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Declaration_of_independence
@YuriBCN – yes, it does seem that the consultation will go ahead. I shouldn’t have trusted a newspaper!
By the way, I do think that ‘referendum’ is an acceptable term to use, together with ‘consultation’ – after all, this ‘consultation’ takes the form of an unofficial, non-binding ‘referendum’.
Plus, it’s annoying to use ‘consultation’ all the way through a blog post.
Hi. As Empar Moliner put it, it’s one thing when your father doesn’t let you go to the pictures, and it’s quite another thing when he doesn’t even let you say that you want to go the pictures. This is seems to me like downright fascism.
Surely the organisers are sitting back with a smug smile of victory on their faces. They’ve got the result they wanted: exposure, more evidence of suppression from the motherland, upsetting ye olde falange and other Spanish “nationalists”, more proof that Spain is undemocratic etc. Calling it a referendum was a stroke of genius. In reality, it’s a poll and one which could easily have been carried out at the Saturday morning market in Arenys if assessing public opinion was the primary objective. But a poll just wouldn’t have had the desired outcome. A referendum on the other hand… Job done, goal scored. Result of the pre-season “friendly”:
Catalan Nationalists 1 Spanish Government & Nationalists 0
Visca Catalunya Lliure !
CATALONIA THE NEXT STATE IN EUROPE //*//
This is not true.
The Spanish court did not ban the referendum.
They only blocked the Council to participate and allow it to happen in the Council.
The meyer of the village has found another place to hold the referendum and will participate on his free time as citizen, not as meyer.
The Spanish government does not have the power to prohibit a private survey on independence.
The referendum will go on.
And Spain will see soon how hundreds of Catalan villages follow al together with a huge private referendum for independence.
I find it hard to understand how any so-called democratic government can continue to effectively surpress the people of Catalunya. Everyone has the right to express their opinions and, indeed, everyone should have the right to a government that respects their beliefs and culture.
The Catalans were once a free and proud nation in their own right, and anyone who knows the people of this region should be able to understand their desire to return to this.
They are not Spanish, and no matter what the government may say or do, they cannot change that fact. They have their own language and culture, which is unique, surely this defines them as a separate nation.
I suspect the truth is that the region of Catalunya is one of the most prosperous in the country and the government is afraid to loose the income generated by these hard working people.
I hope the referendum leads to further publicity for their cause, and that it can be repeated throughout the region.
Keep up the momentum – the only way to win is to keep on pushing.
‘Si tu l’estires fort per aqui, i jo l’estiro fort per allà……….’.