Read in Catalan

"Time is running out for a Catalan compromise." This is the warning from the Financial Times' International Affairs Editor, David Gardner, to Spanish prime minister Mariano Rajoy, in an article this Tuesday. He encourages the Spanish government to offer a "transparent" and "fair" fiscal pact for Catalonia, instead of continuing to treat the Spanish Constitution "like a stone tablet" and not as a document that can evolve and change because, otherwise, "the time for common sense will run out".

Highlighting that, on Monday, for a sixth consecutive year, hundreds of thousands of independence supporters protested during the Diada, Catalonia's National Day, "without breaking even a glass", but instead "threatening to break the post-Franco democratic order"; Gardner warns that the "radical separatists have supplanted the Catalan governors reaffirming a Spanish nationalism from Castile and dividing the left in Catalonia and the whole country".

The writer also notes that, if 'yes' wins the referendum, the result will be binding even though the Constitutional Court has decided that the vote is illegal and banded it under the Spanish Constitution. In his opinion, this has divided both Catalonia and Spain.

The warning's argument

After going over the different events that have taken place over the years related to the independence movement and explaining that the Catalans "feel like a nation", Gardner starts to call a spade a spade and compares "the civil citizen protest" on the Diada on 11th September with the "spectacle of the Spanish police forces" trying to pursue everything related to the referendum.

To act in this way is "less inflammatory" than applying, for example, article 155 of the Spanish Constitution and taking control over Catalonia, but the situation remains stuck because Rajoy, despite having again called for dialogue, "doesn't understand that this is a political problem" and warns that if things continue on this path, he will be "crushed by sedition".

A Rajoy (and a PP - Popular Party) that already contributed in 2010 to increasing pro-independence feelings with the striking down of the new Statute of Autonomy and "refusing" to discuss it for the whole time they've been in power. Precisely because of that, Gardner warns the Spanish government that, if Madrid continues on this path, time will run out for them. Two weeks left.