Catalan democracy movement receives support from Wales

By staff writers
2 Aug 2010

Welsh politicians have backed calls by the people of Catalonia to be allowed to determine their own future. The move follows a decision by the Spanish Constitutional Court to scrap key parts of the Catalan Statute of Autonomy.

The Statute was passed in 2006 by the Catalan and Spanish parliaments and supported in a referendum. But 14 of its articles were this year ruled illegal, while the Court ordered that 27 other articles should be rewritten.

Campaigners say that the Court has over-ruled democracy. Last month, over a million Catalans marched in protest against the ruling. There has been particular focus on the Court's assertion that Catalonia must not be allowed to call itself a nation, but the ruling also effects matters of language, tax and judicial authority.

In the UK, an Early Day Motion (EDM), or parliamentary petition, was tabled by Plaid Cymru MP Hywel Williams. Plaid Cymru, whose name means 'Party of Wales,' is a socialist party which campaigns for an independent Wales within the European Union.

The motion has the support of the Scottish National Party (SNP) and the Green Party. It has also been signed by individual MPs from the Labour and Liberal Democrat parties, as well as from Northern Ireland's Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP).

“This EDM is designed to show our support and solidarity with the people in Catalonia and their right to democratically determine their own future,” said Williams, “People should be allowed to decide for themselves in which sort of constitutional situation they wish to live”.

He described the decision of the Spanish Constitutional Court as “awful”.

Williams added, “The Catalans’ outrage is completely understandable. The Spanish court has completely undermined their democratic system. The future of the Catalan people must be in their hands and no-one else's”.

[Ekk/1]

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