Over 4,200 Catalans suffer repression from Spain for defending the right to self-determination

Over 4,200 Catalans have suffered repression by Spain for peacefully defending the right to self-determination, according to Òmnium Cultural.

“The repression of the Spanish state must be transformed into more civic commitment, more democratic struggle, and more social empowerment,” said the President of Òmnium, Xavier Antich, during an event in Barcelona.

Antich also denounced that the judicial and political persecution of the independence movement is far from over: “The Spanish state has long since ceased to be the guarantor of fundamental rights to become the main perpetrator of its violations.” For this reason, he urged civil society to organize to take advantage of the fight against repression with the ultimate goal of exercising the right to self-determination.

According to figures by Òmnium more than 4,200 people have been retaliated due to political reasons since September 20, 2017. These include 1,432 investigated in criminal proceedings and 1,639 victims of police violence from October 1st to 4th, 2017, and from the protests regarding the independence trial sentence in 2019.

Òmnium has also launched the digital platform antirepressiva. “We have to show the repression of the Spanish State to the world because the state is responsible for the violation of rights by its executive and legislative powers, the police, and the media,” denounced Antich, who added: “They want us to mourn and stay at home; but we take pride in it and show our antirepressive solidarity.”

Spain’s government refuses real dialogue with Catalonia

The Pedro Sánchez administration once again refuses real dialogue with Catalonia and denies the existence of a conflict that was previously recognized by the international community.

Sánchez wants to gather the “negotiating” table between Catalonia and Spain in the last week of July, even though his administration has already warned that important matters will not be discussed. His intention is to whitewash his international image by staging a photo opportunity.

This is happening at a time when the Supreme Court could soon revoke the pardons granted to the 9 pro-independence social civil society leaders and politicians who led the 2017 independence bid. The pro-independence camp has demanded amnesty since the struggle was democratic and no crimes were committed. Amnesty would also prevent the Supreme Court from taking political action in order to unfairly jail Catalan leaders again.

The negotiations between the Catalan and Spanish governments were initially aimed at resolving the ongoing conflict. However, they have only gathered a couple of times in over two years without any results. No even serious discussions have taken place in those meetings.

It is clear, then, that the Spanish government does not want to discuss Catalan independence or amnesty. Instead, it wants to pretend as if Catalonia is no longer pushing for it. Despite the fact that its citizens voted for independence in the last election.

It is also clear that the only possible solution to the conflict necessarily involves letting Catalans exercise their right to self-determination.