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As during Felipe VI's last visit to Barcelona to open the Gastech Exhibition and Conference, the gas industry's largest event worldwide, on 10th September, and during the inauguration of last year's Mobile World Congress, and during the presentation of the Princess of Girona Prizes in June, the Catalan president, the speaker of the Catalan Parliament and the ministers of the Catalan government have again been involved in a boycott of the king of Spain. In this case, not receiving his at the entrance to the MNAC (National Art Museum of Catalonia), where the official dinner was held, waiting inside the room instead. Torra accepted the Congress's invitation in his capacity as the most senior representative of Catalonia, but didn't offer himself for the official hand-kiss, like the mayor of Barcelona, Ada Colau.

The months go by and, far from the situation normalising, the Catalan government, which broke off relations with the Spanish monarchy, is maintaining its rejection of the crown, whilst the king is keeping daggers drawn, with no truce in any public statement he gives. For example, his speech this Sunday evening at the inauguration of the Mobile World Congress: "Spain has become one of the world's full democracies". Last week: "It's not acceptable to appeal to a supposed democracy over the law".

In both cases, messages related to the referendum trial and independence supporters. It's hard to imagine what the foreign invitees who attended the official dinner must have thought when the head of state was talking of Spain as a full democracy. It's a speech you don't hear in neighbouring countries, where it goes without saying. Highlighting it, emphasising it in a few words, merely underlines the existing concern for what's happening and the unexpected trial over the 1st October referendum, with false accusations which, as could be expected, prosecutors aren't managing to prove.

In this public conflict, president Torra used his brief greeting to invitees to recall that two years ago the congress was inaugurated by president Carles Puigdemont, currently in exile in Brussels. He also remembered the members of the Catalan government who couldn't attend the gala dinner, finding themselves in exile or in prison. Torra, with a large yellow loop on his lapel, defended freedom and democracy above all and, addressing Felipe VI, talked about the Catalan people's fight and their destiny: "We all trust in the future because we know where we come from and, rooted in this land, we know where we want to go".

By the way, the leader of the opposition in the Catalan Parliament, Inés Arrimadas, wasn't there either having dedicated the day to her performance in Waterloo, one of the most stupid acts in politics in recent years. And that's not to say there haven't been a few!