Catalan MEP Clara Ponsatí today directly called on the president of the European Commission, Ursula Von der Leyen, to act against Spain in the face of "abuses of the rule of law". “The day of reckoning is approaching,” she asserted during her speech in the European Parliament in the presence of the EU leader.
The full Parliament was this morning debating the ruling by Poland's Constitutional Court that gives primacy to that country's own constitution over EU law. Polish prime minister Mateusz Morawiecki appeared to explain the matter, as did Von der Leyen, who warned that the rules of the game should be the same for everyone and that the EU was considering suspending the financial assistance package earmarked for Poland.
In the context of this debate, Ponsatí stressed that the EU's response to the crisis caused by the Polish decision will shape the future of the EU and the authority and credibility of its institutions. But she added that the problem is not just Poland, and that the crisis has arisen from the laxity with which the EU has responded to other states such as Spain, which "have a good grip" on the political machinery in Brussels.
She reminded the chamber that the pro-independence Catalan MEPs have denounced this situation repeatedly, without the European authorities listening to them and that this double standard is becoming evident.
"Whatever you do with Poland, Mrs Von der Leyen, soon enough you will have to do with Spain, because the Spanish courts are also openly violating European law and the day of reckoning is approaching," she warned, although she then added that, for this very reason, it is probable that the EU will do nothing against Poland.
At the end of the speech, the vice-president of the European Parliament, who at the time was replacing David Sassoli as president, called Ponsatí to order and asked her to stick to the subject of the debate.
Riba: "In the EU, they jail people for a referendum"
Ponsatí, however, was not the only one to speak out about the Spanish situation in the debate. The Catalan Republican Left MEP Diana Riba also invited Von der Leyen and other MEPs to look a little further. "In the EU, people have been imprisoned for protesting, for holding a referendum or for singing a rap song. The right to asylum is being violated. There are MEPs who can exercise their mandate throughout European territory except in their own home country. In the EU journalists have been assassinated for investigating power and the corruption of fugitive monarchs has been covered up. All this is happening in the EU," she warned, calling for the double standard to end and a mechanism put in place to control the rule of law effectively for all member states.
Basque pro-independence left MEP Pernando Barrena also compared the situation in Poland with that in Spain, arguing that the renewal of Spain's maximum juidicial organ, the General Council of the Judiciary, has been paralyzed by "partisan obstruction".