The president of the Generalitat, Carles Puigdemont, yesterday evening assured the plenary meeting of the Catalan Parliament that, with the results of the 1-O referendum in hand, Catalonia “has won the right to be an independent state, to be heard and to be respected.” The Catalan premier argued that October 1 marked “a before and an after”, and that is why he assumes the mandate that “Catalonia become an independent state in the form of a republic”.
Puigdemont then added, “We propose suspending the effects of the declaration of independence a few weeks to begin a phase of dialogue.”
Before that he had addressed the citizens of the rest of Spain in Spanish, saying, “We are not criminals, we are not crazy, we are not instigating a coup, we haven’t been abducted.”
He then asked for serenity and respect, and that the Spanish make an effort to understand why things have reached this point. Assuring them that the Catalans have nothing against the Spaniards, he added that the relationship between Catalonia and Spain is not working.
Puigdemont continued by saying that the constitutional path insisted on by Spain’s governing Popular Party has consistently humiliated Catalonia - with cuts in its Statute, with laws, court rulings, cuts in investment and going against the culture and the language of the country - which has had a profound impact, he said, on Catalan society. “Millions of citizens have come to the conclusion that the best way to continue is for Catalonia to be constituted as a state.”
Puigdemont also addressed companies to reassure them, while assuring the watching population that his government would take into account every one of the country’s 7.5 million citizens.