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Catalonia's political prisoners - the nine pro-independence leaders kept imprisoned by the Spanish state in the face of UN and human rights organization calls for releases - have today commemorated the third anniversary of the Catalan independence referendum on 1st October 2017 via messages on social media and have sent messages calling for determination and unity, and denouncing state repression. Jordi Cuixart, Jordi Sànchez, Oriol Junqueras, Jordi Turull, Josep Rull, Joaquim Forn, Raül Romeva, Carme Forcadell and Dolors Bassa, convicted for their "seditious" roles in the independence process and referendum, emphasised the collective success of the popular consultation that took place three years ago.

The president of Òmnium Cultural group, Jordi Cuixart, called on Catalans to be proud of "our collective achievements" and unity. As he stated before the Supreme Court, Cuixart repeated that "we will do it again as many times as necessary." For his part, then-ANC president Jordi Sànchez recalls that the referendum was the collective project "of a country that sought freedom". Both of them call for unity and stress that "only if we plan together to do it again will we get there. Let's do it!".

"We are very proud of our collective achievements. We are in jail because we did it. And we'll do it again as many times as necessary. United in diversity. Always forward!"— Jordi Cuixart 

"It was the referendum of a country seeking freedom. It was not the referendum of a party, an entity or a government. It was a collective project. The passage of time, far from diminishing the 1st October, makes that feat greater. Only if we plan together again will we succeed. Let's do it!"— Jordi Sànchez

The president of the ERC party, Oriol Junqueras, stressed that on 1st October, the Catalan people showed that they were peaceful, mobilized and determined. "We proved that independence is the only way," said the then-vice-president of Catalonia, concluding: "Let's get ready to do it again! Until we win!"

"On 1st Oct we showed the world that we are a peaceful, mobilized and determined people. We proved that independence is the only way. On October 1st we won. Let's get ready to do it again. Until we win!"— Oriol Junqueras

presos politics Lledoners 01 12 2018 Omnium Cultural ACN

The seven male political prisoners in Lledoners jail / ACN

Democratic dignity

From Lledoners prison, 2017 Catalan government ministers Jordi Turull and Joaquim Forn also expressed views on Twitter. Turull denounced the Spanish state's "repressive shame" in the face of the "democratic dignity of a peaceful people". In turn, Forn recalls "all those who with determination and commitment made possible an historic day in which people made into a reality their will to decide their future freely."

"October 1st, 2017: democratic dignity of a peaceful people, repressive shame of a state."— Jordi Turull i Negre

"Today, on the third anniversary of 1st Oct, an emotional memory for all those who with determination and commitment made possible a historic day on which the people of Catalonia made into a reality their will to decide their future freely."Joaquim Forn

Josep Rull and Raül Romeva, also upheld the achievements of 1st October from Lledoners. Rull recalled the more than two million citizens who took part in the consultation: "waves of hope overcame fear", while Raül Romeva emphasized that the day "represents the best face of our society: committed, democratic, civic". Romeva emphasizes the fact that "it has been and will be worthwhile."

"October 1, 2017, the day 2,266,498 waves of hope overcame fear."— Josep Rull i Andreu

"Raül: 'We voted!' 1st October will always represent the best face of our society: committed, democratic, civic. Three years later, many, many thanks to all of you who made it possible. Do not have any doubts about it: it has been and will be worthwhile." — Raül Romeva i Rueda 

Torra Bassa i Forcadell

Carme Forcadell and Dolors Bassa with president Torra last Monday / ACN

Carme Forcadell, in a concise but direct message, assures in capital letters: "Repression will not stop us." Equally compelling is Dolors Bassa, who begins her message with a "neither forget nor forgive" and recalls the 2,850 people either convicted or charged by Spanish justice as a result of the referendum.

"THREE YEARS AGO TODAY. REPRESSION WILL NOT STOP US."— Carme Forcadell

"1st October, neither forget nor forgive. 2017. Three years have now passed. We have 2,850 people suffering retaliation. Prison sentence for the speaker of Parliament, 6 government ministers, 2 civil group leaders. The Bureau of Parliament sent to trial. Soon the Catalan electoral syndicate as well, and 30 more people from Barcelona's court 13 and..."—  Dolors Bassa

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