The differences between the partners in the Catalan government over the dialogue table continue to be evident as the day of the meeting, still without a specific date, draws nearer. And neither Junts nor ERC are hiding. Today, President Aragonès had the opportunity to defend once again what was his greatest electoral commitment to find a solution to the political conflict with the Spanish government.
After visiting the Moises Broggi Hospital in Sant Joan Despí, along with the Catalan Minister of Health, Josep Maria Argimon, Aragonès assured that his government will go to the negotiating table with "maximum political ambition". He opted to broach at the meeting what he considers to be the two main pillars and consensus within the pro-independence movement: the referendum on self-determination and the amnesty that "puts an end to repression". The Spanish government, however, has already refused to contemplate either of these two procedures long before the meeting.
Moreover, the Catalan president warned that the only alternative is to continue with a political conflict that could still worsen, something everyone wants to avoid, in his opinion: "We want a democratic solution that involves a referendum and amnesty", he insisted.
Consensus in the face of differences
Vice-president Puigneró, on the other hand, has a very different opinion on the meeting to be held the week of September 13th. Yesterday, in his speech at the closing ceremony of the Catalan Summer University, he assured that it is necessary to continue defending the unilateral route in order to have a strong position at the dialogue table. In this sense, he pointed out that the pro-independence movement cannot renounce playing the unilateralist card against the Spanish state".
The vice-president clarified that this is not the first card that must be played, but as it has already been put into practice on other occasions, it is effective. "October 1st was a unilateral act and the Spanish state has to know that we are ready to play it again", he remarked.
Today, on the position of the Minister for Digital Policy and Territory, Aragonès said that "it is logical that there are many proposals" but he preferred to focus on the consensus within the independence movement.
Forcadell in favour of dialogue
Former speaker Carme Forcadell also wanted to respond to Puigneró, and asked to leave "unilateralism for later". In an interview for Catalunya Ràdio, she positively assessed the holding of the roundtable, warning that "the situation is the same as in October 2017. If we do the same, we will end up the same way".
Unlike the vice-president, Forcadell wants to play the dialogue card, as she does not see so clearly that unilateralism can work. When asked whether she believes that the current Catalan government would end up in prison were it to take the unilateral route, she responded with a resounding "yes", as "nothing" has changed over the last four years. And that is why she has opted for negotiation with the Spanish government: "We now have the dialogue card: let's play it", she said.