germany. international press reaction

German pragmatism

Most political analysts agree that Germany is a hugely pragmatic country in which the voices calling on the Spanish government to come to the negotiation table are growing

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.”

Millions of Catalans take to the streets
News, September 12, 2012
A huge show of force on the streets of Barcelona, the biggest in the history of Catalonia[... Catalans pay too many taxes, while the central government cuts back services.
The rebellious regions of Europe
Feature, June 29, 2013
Catalonia has no solution inside of Spain... If a country has a problem with independence issues, the most intelligent thing is to try to negotiate, but the Spanish state has not done that.
A riot in the void of power
News, August 4, 2016
“There is probably no other form of stopping the illegal Catalan referendum other than putting the state security forces on to the streets.
Spain threatens Catalans instead of courting them
News, August 1, 2017
EU diplomats are surprised that Spain makes no effort to woo the Catalans... Political analysts agree that the problems cannot be solved by prohibitions.
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