Col·lectiu Emma - Explaining Catalonia

Language: English

The Catalan Tax Authority: a step forward

Thursday, 29 january 2015 | ARA
ARA   24-01-2015   MARTA ESPASA   The Catalan government has announced 186 new vacancies in the Catalan Tax Office (ATC, in Catalan), as well as a budget increase of 25 per cent. This is, without a doubt, a step in the right direction because it means that this government body will receive the necessary resources to fulfill the duties laid out for it in Catalonia’s current Charter.

 It is a proven fact that for any decentralised system to work efficiently, the central government must transfer the decision-making powers and spending management, as well as the capacity to allocate and manage the resources needed to fund any devolved powers. [+]

Catalonia approves special status for Occitan Val d’Aran, including its right to self-determination

Wednesday, 28 january 2015 | VilaWeb
VILAWEB   22-01-2015     The Catalan Parliament approved on Wednesday the Law on the Val d’Aran’s special status within Catalonia, recognising its “Occitan national reality” and its right to self-determination. This small Pyrenean valley, surrounded by high peaks and located in Catalonia’s north-western corner, is the last land where the Occitan language is widely spoken, although it is called Aranese there. The Val d’Aran County has had a certain degree of self-rule within Catalonia since 1990, further recognised with the Catalan Statute of Autonomy from 2006. [+]

Altafaj: ‘The European leaders are taking the process in Catalonia very seriously’

Sunday, 25 january 2015 | VilaWeb
The representative of the Government of Catalonia in Brussels reminds that the EU in the past has done things that were legally impossible and politically inconceivable and believes that pragmatism will prevail in the case of independence

Review: Victus – The Fall of Barcelona, by Albert Sánchez Piñol

Friday, 23 january 2015 | THE IRIS TIMES
THE IRIS TIMES 21-01-2015   FRANK MAcGABHANN     Three hundred years ago last September, early on the morning of September 11th, 1714, the nuns in the Convent of St Peter in the then walled city of Barcelona lean out of the windows of their convent and, with shot and shell exploding around them and the air thick with smoke, implore their defenders , “Keep fighting – the angels are on their way to help us”.   Shortly after, the Marquis de Varennes, the Bourbon regimental commander who had led his French troops into the city through one of the breached walls, orders his soldiers to take aim at the convent. [+]

Guide to understanding the Mas-Junqueras agreement

Wednesday, 21 january 2015 | ARA
ARA 15-01-2015   ORIOL MARCH   It was just after 3 p.m. on Wednesday when the representatives of  the pro-independence NGOs arrived at the Palau de la Generalitat in the hopes of coming to an agreement. Four hours later, Artur Mas appeared in front of the media to announce an agreement with seven key points allowing two objectives: re-establishing unity and, in addition, setting a date for the definitive referendum which will take place in the form of plebiscitary elections. [+]

1.4 million Catalans signed international complaint against Rajoy for banning self-determination vote

Tuesday, 20 january 2015 | CNA
Barcelona (ACN).-

The Spanish Government “violates the Catalan people’s right to decide its own political future and bans the exercise of democracy through a referendum or an internationally standardised consultation vote”, reads the document signed by 1,386,628 citizens and 3,703 elected representatives such as mayors and MPs.

The document will be sent to the United Nations, the European Parliament, the European Commission, the Council of Europe and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE).

The complaint reports on the “Spanish Government’s anti-democratic attitude” for ignoring an electoral mandate from 2012 – in which 80% of the newly-elected Catalan Parliament ran promising a legal and binding self-determination vote in Catalonia, in elections that became a sort of plebiscite on this issue. In addition, the Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has unilaterally imposed his no-to-everything attitude since mid-2012, despite the numerous peaceful citizen demonstrations and demands from Catalonia’s legitimate representatives.

The complaint asks the international community to make the necessary steps “to guarantee that the Catalan people can democratically decide its political future”.

The signatures were collected during the symbolic vote on independence held on 9 November by the civil society organisations Catalan National Assembly (ANC) and Òmnium Cultural, as well as by the Association of Municipalities for Independence (AMI). The signatures of elected representatives already started on the 5 November last. 

Catalans raise stakes on secession with early polls

Thursday, 15 january 2015 | FINANCIAL TIMES
Catalonia will hold an early election on September 27 in a bid to inject fresh momentum into the region’s campaign for independence and rally popular support for a historic break with Spain [+]

Catalan Leader Calls Early Vote in Push for Independence

Wednesday, 14 january 2015 | BLOOMBERG
BLOOMBERG 14-01-2014   By Esteban Duarte   Regional President Artur Mas said Catalonia will hold early elections in September, asking voters to cast their ballots on independence from Spain for the second time in a year.   The vote will be held on Sept. 27 while the campaign will kick off on Catalan National Day, Sept. 11, which has seen million-strong pro-independence demonstrations in Barcelona the past three years. Mas reached an agreement with his separatist rival, Esquerra Republicana leader Oriol Junqueras, to run separate tickets, but with a common roadmap toward secession, making it a de facto referendum on secession. [+]

"To be a state, you need a state's mentality"

Tuesday, 13 january 2015 | CATALONIA TODAY
CATALONIATODAY 04-01-2015   By ÒSCAR PALAU   The Catalan parliament has passed legislation boosting the extent of its reach abroad. –It is a pioneering law, which makes Catalonia the only place in Europe with regional status but with a law allowing us to consolidate our activities abroad within a legal framework.   But is it constitutional? –We have the conviction, and the Consell de Garanties Estatutàries agrees, that the law is constitutional. [+]

Mas appoints Amadeu Altafaj as Permanent Representative to EU

Monday, 12 january 2015 | ARA
ARA 08-01-2015     FERRAN CASAS    On 4 December, at a Diplocat seminar held in Rome, government spokesman Francesc Homs announced a "reinforcement" and a "qualitative leap" in the presence of the Generalitat in Brussels. He did not give details, and the announcement of the opening of new offices in the Italian capital and in Vienna stole the headlines. Later, on 23 December, the Catalan executive created the position of Permanent Representative to the European Union (EU). [+]

Col·lectiu Emma - Explaining Catalonia

Col·lectiu Emma is a network of Catalans and non-Catalans living in different countries who have made it their job to track and review news reports about Catalonia in the international media. Our goal is to ensure that the world's public opinion gets a fair picture of the country's reality today and in history.

We aim to be recognized as a trustworthy source of information and ideas about Catalonia from a Catalan point of view.
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Col·lectiu Emma - Explaining Catalonia