Yesterday, Laura Borràs became the protagonist of the tribute to the victims of the 2017 Catalonia terrorist attacks that was held on Barcelona's Rambla when she went to greet a group of demonstrators who had earlier broken the minute of silence, while the relatives of the victims were weeping with emotion. In response to this controversy, which led to social media outrage focused on videos showing the action by the currently suspended speaker of the Catalan Parliament, Borràs has tried to distance herself from the protester's actions in interviews with the two main Catalan radio broadcasters, Catalunya Ràdio and RAC1.
Borràs, who attended the event in her role as president of Junts, while PSC deputy Assumpta Escarp represented Parliament due to Borras's suspension, has today reiterated that she respected the minute of silence "scrupulously", in contrast with the demonstrators, who were demanding to be told "the whole truth" about the attacks five years ago. The events on the Rambla yesterday even led Junts to distance itself from the disruptive shouts but the sectors closest to Borràs then added their own nuances to the party's tweet.
Borràs assures that she respected the minute of silence
Amidst the criticism, which has come from all of the parties, including Junts's Catalan coalition partner ERC, who accused the suspended speaker of seeking the limelight at an event centred on memory of the victims, Borràs insisted that "many of the people gathered were themselves victims and relatives. Throughout the event there were banners and shouts demanding the truth, also during the floral offering and the minute of silence, which I respected."
In the same vein, the Junts politician stressed that she considers that interrupting a solemn moment was totally out of place and singled out one single protester as the author of the disrespectful shouts, a person that she did not go to meet: "Only one voice was heard and at no time did I greet that person," she said. In addition, she recalled that by the time she approached the protesters, the event had been over for several minutes, and she did so accompanied by her party colleague, Jaume Alsonso Cuevillas, who is also a lawyer for some of the victims, thus answering the criticism of those who claim that her gesture had itself interrupted the act: "That claim has no veracity".
Crossed messages on Twitter
In response to the controversy involving the party president, Junts quickly sent a tweet on Wednesday in which the pro-independence party reiterated its support for the victims of the attacks and strongly rejected the interruption of the minute of silence. This categorical message was not retweeted by Borràs, who excused herself by assuring that she did not have time to attend to Twitter yesterday, but, nevertheless, she did herself react to the message of Cuevillas, in which he corrected his own party: "I'm sorry, it didn't go like that. At the end of the minute of silence, people started shouting 'we want to know the truth'. As a lawyer for some of the victims, I assure you that this is what we want. It's something else entirely for people to boo politicians who don't want to be investigated and applaud those who do," he wrote. Regarding these messages, Borràs defended that they are not contradictory or a confrontation, but serve to nuance and explain how, according to her, everything went.
Among the dozens of messages denouncing Borràs's attitude that filled the networks, former Junts general secretary Jordi Sànchez's tweet was understood as a reproach to her colleague. "There should have been no-one else prominent apart from the relatives of the victims. It was neither the place to break the minute of silence nor the time to seek political protagonism. It's regretful. Not the way to do things," he wrote, taking the opportunity to regret that many victims had felt neglected.