Madrid Intends Forced Catalonia Elections in January

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Madrid Intends Forced Catalonia Elections in January

by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman)

Reuters reported it. Opposition Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party leadership backs PM Rajoy’s plan to revoke Catalan autonomy, imposing Madrid rule – wanting regime-controlled puppet governance replacing regional democracy.

He intends holding so-called January “elections,” regime-friendly candidates alone likely permitted to run, Catalonia’s sitting government to be replaced, the overwhelming majority will of its people ignored.

On Saturday, Rajoy will convene a special cabinet meeting, beginning the process of suspending Catalan autonomy. President Puigdemont said he’ll ask parliament to declare independence if things proceed this way.

Imposing direct rule on the region can happen by end of next week, according to a regime spokesperson.

Spain’s upper house Senate must first form a committee to debate actions to be taken, never before invoked, the body convening on Monday.

Rajoy’s ruling People’s Party holds a parliamentary majority. Things could come to a head within a week.

Reuters said he wants as broad a consensus as possible before imposing Madrid rule on Catalonia, sacking its government, calling new elections to replace it.

A very dicey situation is developing, certain to bring hundreds of thousands of Catalans to the streets protesting against what’s planned.

Catalonia is Spain’s most important economic region, accounting for 20% of its GDP, Madrid going all out to prevent it from breaking away.

Separately, a manifesto titled “The New Culture for the Republic,” signed by scores of figures involved in journalism, politics, art and culture, denounced the Rajoy regime’s “offensive (against Catalonia’s) educational system, linguistic immersion, culture and democratic freedoms of assembly and the press.”

The region is in a “state of emergency,” it stressed, the will of its people disrepected by Madrid, including “police repression of” referendum day voting.

Rajoy “act(ed) arbitrarily and with impunity against any opposition to the idea of a uniform and centralized Spain.”

“(T)o curb any new thinking, the Spanish government is capable of making use of fear tactics, repression and incarceration.”

Separatist Catalan National Assembly and Omnium Cultural organization leaders were arrested, detained and charged with sedition for defending “free exercise of the right to self-determination.”

Political repression is rife. Many others were imprisoned for political reasons. Madrid’s policy is “paternalistic and condescending…against the will of the Catalans who want self-determination” – their fundamental right under international law.

The manifesto authors urged forming a constituent movement “without delay” for a nation committed to ecological sustainability, gender equality, equity and justice for all – polar opposite how fascist Madrid operates.

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Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman was born in 1934 in Boston, MA. In 1956, he received a BA from Harvard University. Two years of US Army service followed, then an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. After working seven years as a marketing research analyst, he joined the Lendman Group family business in 1967. He remained there until retiring at year end 1999. Writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Distinguished guests are featured. Listen live or archived. Major world and national issues are discussed. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient.