Germany is an instrumental country in the European scenario, especially for its role in the European Union. If we take a look at the German media, we notice a growing interest in the Catalan issue. Journalist Ute Müller says the turning point came in 2012, when 1.5 million people took to the streets in Barcelona. She thinks there is now a fairly good understanding of Catalonia’s complaints; in part because Germany has a federal structure, which means “they understand that powers, such as the management of the airports, should be devolved.” As for the situation today, the Die Welt newspaper correspondent thinks that Germany’s attention is now more focused on the refugee crisis and the ongoing problems with Turkey. Whenever there is a focus on the Catalan issue, it is to express concerns over the tensions between the Catalan and Spanish governments “that there is no dialogue, and the sense there will be a collision.” The Catalan government delegate in Berlin, Marie Kapretz, admits that Germans are “sceptical” of change due to the instability it brings.
Adapting to reality
In a recent interview for El Punt Avui newspaper, journalist Krystina Schreiber said she couldn’t anticipate what Angela Merkel would do, but “in Germany she is seen as adaptable. If there is a interest in Germany, I’m convinced she will intervene.” The Konrad-Adenauer Foundation, the think-tank of Angela Merkel’s party, claimed in recently that the Catalan situation is a political challenge that “cannot be solved by appealing only to existing laws and constitutional regulations.” It is not the first time it has weighed in on the process. In March, it published a report calling for a political solution and warning of the impossibility of solving the conflict only in the courts. The feeling is that any German reaction to Catalan independence would be pragmatic. Müller says: “No doubt the leaders will say it’s a shame they decided to leave Spain, but in practice, everything will stay the same.”
- Catalonia Today 03-09-2017 Pàgina 27