The Spanish government led by Mariano Rajoy has vowed to do whatever necessary to stop the Catalan referendum for Independence [on October 1] and he said that no option has been ruled out. In Catalunya we know very well what that means, since in many occasions in the last few hundred years, the Spanish army has been sent to crush any attempts to achieve independence.
Mr Rajoy falls short of admitting that option but he does not deny it, but the minister of defence has stated that the army is ready for orders. He has also suggested that they will apply article 155 that will cancel all the autonomy in the region. He has detained many politicians whose only fault was to follow the mandate of the people that elected them.
He has sent police to search without court warrant printing presses where he believed that fliers, in favour of independence, were printed. He has accused the opposition of organising a coup d’état and detained many politicians. He has sent 5000 riot police from the rest of Spain with the sole purpose of intimidating the population since there has been demonstrations but not a single act of violence that would grant to leave Madrid with only 30 riot police.
And what does the European Union have to say to that? Absolutely nothing, hiding behind the sovereignty of the member states.
But this is not a case of Independence or not. It is a case of democracy and human rights or not. In a democratic country everything should be discussed and put to vote. And the United Nations charter 1.1.2 talks about the principle of equal rights and self-determination of people. See what happened in the UK with the Scottish referendum.
Democratic countries should defend the Catalan rights. Remember the poem of Martin Niemöller:
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me
and there was no one left to speak for me.
In Cyprus, you should understand the concept of violation of human rights and i am sure, you also like it when people help you and stand by you. Democratic people please do not stay silent, and support the Catalans.
Jordi Guri, via email