As official International Visitors in the Catalan referendum of independence held on October 1st, we saw first hand the bravery, humanity & dignity displayed by the Catalan people, whatever their political persuasion, as they exercised their human-right to self-determination by voting for their future. However, we also saw the utterly barbaric, inhumane & violent repression exercised by the Spanish state against it’s own citizens in an attempt to stop the vote. They did not succeed.
That vote was overwhelmingly in favour of independence.
Today, the Catalan Parliament has declared, by a ballot of 70-10 (with 2 abstentions), the independence of the Catalan Republic.
We recognise that independence.
We call on Spain and all other national governments & international bodies to do likewise, starting here at home with our Scottish Government and the British Government.
We also urge the Spanish Government to pull back from the violent descent into fascism it has sadly seemingly embraced in recent weeks. This is not the path towards the prosperous, peaceful world that despite our differences, we all want. There is no way for Spain to hold on to Catalonia now. It may have been possible in the past to persuade the people of Catalonia to stay part of Spain; some arguments that could have been deployed, compromises made. But, by their absolute refusal to negotiate and talk at every opportunity, Spain has forced the hand of the Catalan Parliament. There is no route to a peaceful settlement that includes the status quo or any form of government that is imposed against the will of the people. It cannot happen in 21st century Europe that a population must live by a government they have absolutely refused. It will not happen. They must engage in talks with their newly-indepdngent neighbour, and we urge them to do so.
Finally, to the people of Catalonia, we salute your bravery & dignity at this difficult time. We do not know what the future holds for you but through the good times and bad, we stand with you.
Visca la República!