Pittella and Valenciano: President of Catalonia should immediately call off illegal referendum


“Spanish and Catalan socialists are calling the President of Catalonia to immediately call off the illegal referendum, in order to open a space for political dialogue as soon as possible.

“The European socialists, as well as the European Union institutions, support constitutional legality and enforcement of legislation. We support the more than 120 socialist majors who believe as we do that democracy can only be guaranteed and institutions can only be protected in compliance with the law.

“Any measures and acts taken to defend the legality, under judicial monitoring and by virtue of a court judgement, must have the support of democrats. What is at stake is the survival of the democratic system, which cannot be jeopardized by anyone under any circumstances. Spain is a consolidated democratic regime and Catalonia has and must continue to have its own self-government for which this democratic system is guarantor. There are no doubts about that in Europe.

“Therefore, we support the rule of law in Spain, because it guarantees coexistence, respect for legal procedures and allows the implementation of the necessary reforms. The referendum convened by the Catalonian government is clearly illegal, opposed to the Spanish Constitution and legislation, contrary to the Catalonia Home Rule, and contrary to the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe. It has no legal basis in international law.

“As the Spanish Socialist Party did already, we call for an opening of both the legal and political channels for dialogue. Spanish socialists have succeeded in establishing a Parliamentary Committee for the study and modernization of the Spanish territorial model.

“We make a general call to maintain calm and peaceful engagement. It is always necessary to comply with the rule of law, in keeping with the limits of proportionality.”