Contributed by Joe Montero
Catalans came together in Barcelona to celebrate Independence Day (11 September), or the Diada is its locally called. Estimated to be about 600,000 the the police, the number was less than the 1.5 million last year, mainly because of a political division in the independence movement.
The rally in Barcelona where thousands sang for independence
Video by Manu Meri
junts per Catalunya (JxCat), which had been the biggest party till the regional election last year and is the more conservative section of the movement has entered into an alliance with the Catalan wing of the Socialist Party for the next municipal elections and does not want to jeopardise this by pushing independence too hard.
This would damage the alliance. The Socialist Party does not support Catalan independence. The current JxCat leadership seems to believe it can win some concessions.
The other major party, Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya (ERC), is highly critical of the alliance, calling it an “incomprehensible strategic error.”
Talk are now underway to heal the breach.
The difficulties have been made more intense because much of the leadership is in prison or exile overseas. This has contributed to the confusion.
Complicating matters still further is that although the socialist Party won the highest vote in the Spanish election, it did not win enough to form government. It failed to secure an alliance with the traditional conservatives and new fascist VOX, and has so far refused.to join with Unidas Podemos join with the anti-austerity Unidas Podemos,
The Socialist Party did not get enough votes to form a government in its own right, and has so far refused to form an alliance anti-austerity Unidas Podemos, which has been campaigning for a coalition government of progressive forces to combat the raise of fascism across Spain.
In pursuing this primary goal, Unidas Podemos is holding back on clearly backing Catalan independence. To do anything else would end any hope of cooperation from a party that has a history of opposition.
Even so, It remains that the policy of Unidas Podemos is that the Catalans have a right to choose.
Ehst is going to unfold over the next few weeks and months is uncertain and there is a high probability that Spain will soon go to yet another election.
Despite these difficulties, the Independence Day march was still impressive and spirited. It showed that the political base that delivered it the highest vote in the national election to the independence movement, is still there and in a position to take off, with the resolution of the momentary obstacles.
Video by Euronews
Independence Day is observed on the date in 1714, when Spain annexed the Catalan territory and imposed rule from Madrid.