Cata­lan ul­ti­ma­tum with­stands

Costa Levante News - - NEWS -

By James Parkes DE­SPITE Cata­lan re­gional pres­i­dent Quim Torra com­ing un­der fire, af­ter he gave the PM un­til Novem­ber to agree on a ref­er­en­dum for Cataluña or his party would with­draw its sup­port to the PSOE cen­tral gov­ern­ment, he has main­tained his threat - al­though slightly post­pon­ing it.

The ul­ti­ma­tum de­liv­ered last week - as pub­lished by Costa Blanca News - led to a cri­sis within the Cata­lan gov­ern­ment as Sr Torra's own party PdCat and his gov­ern­ment sup­port­ers ERC were not in agree­ment with his state­ment.

On the other hand, rad­i­cal na­tion­al­ist and anti-es­tab­lish­ment group CUP de­manded im­me­di­ate ac­tion.

The en­tire sit­u­a­tion led to the in­ter­rup­tion of the usual re­gional par­lia­men­tary gen­eral pol­i­tics de­bate and has un­der­lined the dif­fer­ences be­tween sep­a­ratists.

Hence, Sr Torra has slightly di­luted the ul­ti­ma­tum, by say­ing he only guar­an­tees his party's sup­port to the PSOE gov­ern­ment in Madrid un­til the Supreme Court passed sen­tence on the Catalán lead­ers in prison over the in­ci­dents in the re­gion a year ago, when uni­lat­eral in­de­pen­dence was pro­claimed and the then PP-gov­ern­ment ap­plied ar­ti­cle 155 of the Con­sti­tu­tion to take over di­rect con­trol of the re­gion and call elec­tions that where held in De­cem­ber.

The sen­tences are ex­pected in De­cem­ber, which, ac­cord­ing to Sr Torra would be the new dead­line - ef­fec­tively a new ul­ti­ma­tum.

This ul­ti­ma­tum also puts pres­sure on the ju­di­cial sys­tem, as in the event of ex­tended prison sen­tences for those de­tained, the sta­bil­ity of cen­tral gov­ern­ment would be com­pro­mised - al­ways tak­ing into ac­count if Sr Torra ful­fills his threat. In a vote held on Tues­day, ERC broke the sep­a­ratists’ united front by sid­ing with the PSOE in vot­ing in favour of the re­place­ment of the re­gional MPs that are at large or cur­rently in prison.

PdCat (JxC) wanted the MPs (which in­clude former re­gional pres­i­dent Puigde­mont) to re­tain their seats and del­e­gate their vote in other MPs. En­vi­ron­men­tal­ist as­so­ci­a­tion Ecol­o­gis­tas en Ac­ción have this week launched a 'non-hunters li­cence' as op­posed to the hunt­ing per­mit re­quired through­out Spain. The group has launched the li­cence to protest agains what is con­sid­ers an 'abuse in hunt­ing priv­i­leges'. Through­out Spain there are 332,000 le­gal hunters (signed on at a hunt­ing fed­er­a­tion) and around 800,000 li­cences - one hunter can have sev­eral de­pend­ing on the type of hunt­ing dur­ing the sea­son that be­gins this month. The non-hunt­ing li­cence can be ob­tained free of charge via the Ecol­o­gis­tas en Ac­ción web­site and is open to non-mem­bers too. Two Span­ish bars, one in Madrid and one in Barcelona, have been listed in this year's edi­tion of The World's Best Bars pub­lished by Bri­tish group Wil­liam Reed Busi­ness Me­dia since 2009. Barcelona's Par­adiso is ranked at num­ber 37 (ris­ing from 67 in 2017) and Madrid's Salmón Gurú is in 47th place (82nd in 2017). The list is elab­o­rated fol­low­ing the re­sults of a jury of 500 ex­perts in cock­tail mix­ing world­wide.

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