Catalonia and Autonomy within Spain.

Rover

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I personally do not see the current split within Spain as being a good move.

Some reports say one of the causes is Franco’s treatment of Catalonia in the past. For those interested in history look at how the situation was handled in Euskadi, the Basque region. A region with perhaps a bigger problem with Franco and that era.

There is even a Royal Marine connection.o_O

How do you think this will also affect relations regarding Gibraltar?

Never forget the 'bigger picture'!
 
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ThreadpigeonsAlpha

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I personally do not see the current split within Spain as being a good move.

Some reports say one of the causes is Franco’s treatment of Catalonia in the past. For those interested in history look at how the situation was handled in Euskadi, the Basque region. A region with perhaps a bigger problem with Franco and that era.

There is even a Royal Marine connection.o_O

How do you think this will also affect relations regarding Gibraltar?

Never forget the 'bigger picture'!

I can’t say whether I agree with it or not, but I think it’s been poorly handled by the Spanish government, and the EU. Riot police to stem the vote. Turning a peaceful vote violent even if it was “illegal”. Can you imagine if David Cameron had turned the riot police out for the Polling Stations for the Scottish referendum?

What makes me laugh is that Scotland and the First Minister keep going on about “understanding” Catalonia’s position, making all these statements to give the 2 fingers to Westminster but they want to stay with the EU. Ironic.
 

Chelonian

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It's a mess, certainly. Arguably the government of Spain made a fundamental error in deploying heavy-handed tactics prior to and during the referendum, as alluded to by TPA.

Deploying Guardia Civil and other assets actually gave the referendum credibility. Madrid could have let the referendum run its course and then simply disregarded it, which is the formal constitutional position.
 

ThreadpigeonsAlpha

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It's a mess, certainly. Arguably the government of Spain made a fundamental error in deploying heavy-handed tactics prior to and during the referendum, as alluded to by TPA.

Deploying Guardia Civil and other assets actually gave the referendum credibility. Madrid could have let the referendum run its course and then simply disregarded it, which is the formal constitutional position.

Or be seen to give a token effort, or even offer a sort of independence with various levels of a devolved government.
 

Rover

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It would seem that nether Madrid or Barcelona have not learnt anything from how autonomy was handled in Euskadi.:cool:

If we do not learn from history we will continue to make the same mistakes.-banghead-
 

Chelonian

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I confess that I don't know much about the politics of Spain but many regions do have strong individual identities—politically and culturally—comparable with Scotland perhaps. I had the good fortune to live in a fairly remote Spanish town about twenty years ago and was struck by the antipathy towards Madrid. Many seemed to regard it as being 'the enemy'.

EU membership was widely celebrated though because of the regional funding. Even the small town I lived in had impeccably smooth, tarmacked roads which would put many British cities to shame.

The relationship between the Guardia Civil and the Policia Local was also tense at times. Two completely different entities.
 

Guest

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I can’t say whether I agree with it or not, but I think it’s been poorly handled by the Spanish government, and the EU. Riot police to stem the vote. Turning a peaceful vote violent even if it was “illegal”. Can you imagine if David Cameron had turned the riot police out for the Polling Stations for the Scottish referendum?

What makes me laugh is that Scotland and the First Minister keep going on about “understanding” Catalonia’s position, making all these statements to give the 2 fingers to Westminster but they want to stay with the EU. Ironic.

:)
It's funny isn't it. Sturgeon and Puigdeont say they want to leave their original unions just to join another massive one where they will have even less autonomy. I may be wrong but I feel the EU strengthens all these separatist movements around Europe because it could theoretically allow an alternative to traditional unions ( like the U.K) for breakaway states, so they can pretend to be completely independent. This is why I now think Brexit was a better idea because it is far harder for Sturgeon to justify an independent Scotland in the EU when the UK and the pound is completely out of it.
 

Rover

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As I heard from a member of the FCO, “Please find me someone who understands”!

So Catalan does not want self government!!
It wants to govern itself!!
-doctor--doctor-

Am I missing something?

noun: autonomy

o the right or condition of self-government.

o a self-governing country or region.

o plural noun: autonomies

" freedom from external control or influence; independence.

"the courts enjoy a considerable degree of autonomy"

synonyms:

self-government, independence, self-rule, home rule, sovereignty, self-determination, freedom, autarchy; More

self-sufficiency, individualism

Look at what happened in Euskadi.
 

Chelonian

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The figures are interesting. It is widely reported that 90% of those who voted did so for secession and 'independence'.

But only 42·3% of eligble voters turned out to vote.
Many citizens who oppose independence made a conscious decision to not vote. Not because of apathy but because the referendum was illegal under the 1978 Spanish Constitution.

Arguably the referendum demonstrates a popular opinion has no greater legal weight than, say, a Saturday night vote on TV's Come Dancing.
 

Rover

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Some background to Euskadi.

May I suggest a quick search on Luis María Retolaza. His life gives a good insight into the birth of the Basque region to its current situation.

Franco’s subjectation of the Basque people led to the rise of ETA their main target being the Guarda Civil seen as the enforcement arm of the Franco Government.
With the death of Franco and the return of the King relations between the Basque and the Madrid began to improve. To extent that the Basque region of Northern Spain became an autonomous state having its own President, Parliament and perhaps most importantly its own Police.

Senor Retolaza being a prime mover in the forming of the Basque Police. Not wanting a Police Force with any connection to the Spanish Government and due to the regions strong ties with the UK a force along the lines of the UK Police was seen as the way to progress.
With the agreement of Madrid and talks with the FCO it was decided to have a UK Training Team move to Victoria and establish a training base.

At this time ETA started to turn against those Basque who favoured the new status of Euskadi, as such the ‘military wing ‘came to be regarded as a terrorist organisation. Having connections with the PIRA did not help.
Things have moved on from those early days with the people of Euskadi now being a stable autonomous state within Northern Spain.

Perhaps of interest.

 

ThreadpigeonsAlpha

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The figures are interesting. It is widely reported that 90% of those who voted did so for secession and 'independence'.

But only 42·3% of eligble voters turned out to vote.
Many citizens who oppose independence made a conscious decision to not vote. Not because of apathy but because the referendum was illegal under the 1978 Spanish Constitution.

Arguably the referendum demonstrates a popular opinion has no greater legal weight than, say, a Saturday night vote on TV's Come Dancing.

If there’s a vote. Illegal or not. You would make an effort to voice it.

If anything if you opposed it, you would make an effort to go and vote. To challenge it.

Or Spain could allow a vote.... but they are too scared.
 

GreyWing

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Arguably the referendum demonstrates a popular opinion has no greater legal weight than, say, a Saturday night vote on TV's Come Dancing.

I do find it odd sometimes when media presenters don't seem to know the difference between a "non legally binding" referendum and an "illegal" vote. Just because something isn't legal, it doesn't mean it's automatically illegal.

For example, you aren't breaking the law for voting in something that isn't legally binding. As you say, voting in Come Dancing (yes it's still the 80's name I'm given it :D, because it's the same junk). Doesn't result in people going to jail because it isn't legally binding.

I do wish the media would understand the difference.
 

Rover

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This did not help.

The independence movement was galvanised by a 2010 Spanish Constitutional Court ruling which many Catalans saw as a humiliation.

That ruling struck down some key parts of Catalonia's 2006 autonomy statute. The court refused to recognise Catalonia as a nation within Spain; ruled that the Catalan language should not take precedence over Spanish in the region; and overruled measures giving Catalonia more financial autonomy.

The court acted after Mr Rajoy's Popular Party asked it to. Now, to defuse this crisis, Madrid could reinstate the elements of autonomy that were taken from Catalonia.”

Will economic pressure defeat the separatists?

It is a major factor now. Madrid has powerful economic levers, even though Catalonia is one of Spain's wealthiest regions.

On 5 October a business exodus from Catalonia began.

The banks Caixa and Sabadell, along with several utility companies, decided to move their legal headquarters out of Catalonia. Spain has made it easier for businesses to leave, and more than 1,600 companies have now copied the banks' move.

Catalonia accounts for about a fifth of Spain's economic output, but Catalonia also has a huge pile of debt and owes €52bn (£47bn; $61bn) to the Spanish.
 

Rover

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Or Spain could allow a vote.... but they are too scared.


“Prime minister Rajoy has called an election for the Catalans on December 21 – but this time it will be the Catalan nationalists who stay away.

At the very least a tug of war, if not violence, is coming fast to Catalonia.

No one in Spain seems able to act as an honest broker – certainly not King Felipe who, perhaps unwisely, has intervened to side with Madrid – while its partners in the EU refuse to do so.

What Spain needs now are friends to help mediate and calm things down.”

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5026515/MARK-ALMOND-Spain-turn-bloody-Balkans.html

It is a wise man that knows when to stop digging a hole.-banghead-
 

Chelonian

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If there’s a vote. Illegal or not. You would make an effort to voice it.

Perhaps. Unless the elected national government declared that the election or referendum was an unlawful one and that citizens committed an offence by participating. From what I can gather this may have been a significant factor for many.

Just because something isn't legal, it doesn't mean it's automatically illegal.

Agreed. But it's my understanding that holding such a referendum is unlawful under Spain's 1978 Constitutional Act. This 'splitting of hairs' is something I picked up during an obscure radio show analysis at about 0400 one morning recently, so I can't vouch for its accuracy.

To be fair to the government of Spain the 1978 constitution is—in contrast to the UK constitution—a written one. Our own politicians have much greater flexibility in terms of interpreting constitutional matters. Or 'making it up as we go along' as some of us call it. :)
 

GreyWing

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Agreed. But it's my understanding that holding such a referendum is unlawful under Spain's 1978 Constitutional Act. This 'splitting of hairs' is something I picked up during an obscure radio show analysis at about 0400 one morning recently, so I can't vouch for its accuracy.

The way I heard it argued was that the referendum itself was not illegal but what it was trying to achieve was. The constitution prohibits anything that attempts to challenge "indissoluble unity of the Spanish Nation". It (as far as I'm aware) does not mention specifically referendums.

One could read that as not being illegal if the locals would have voted to remain part of Spain.

For Spain's definition to be correct in that the referendum itself was illegal it would first have top acknowledge that there was actually a referendum which it won't so far hasn't done. It's basically like saying I'm prosecuting you for using a gun, even though at the same time I'm saying you never had a gun.

Ironically therefore, to prosecute anyone under the rule, would be itself to give it legitimacy as a referendum. Would they be that stupid?

It is a wise man that knows when to stop digging a hole.-banghead-

:D
 

Chelonian

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The constitution prohibits anything that attempts to challenge "indissoluble unity of the Spanish Nation". It (as far as I'm aware) does not mention specifically referendums.

My bold. I think that this might be a key factor. The notion of what constitutes a 'challenge' is a bit vague but I'd guess that a referendum sponsored by a devolved regional government might be considered to be a challenge.

Anyhow, while you're glued to the Halloween edition of Come Dancing I'll be searching for the official Chinese reaction to recent events in Spain. :) It should be interesting; China was truly baffled that the UK government did not immediately deploy military force to crush the notion of an independent Scotland.
 

Harsh

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Catalan and Galicia have been bankrolling Spain for years there's shared anger towards the south and Madrid throughout the north.
 
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