“Let’s leave the trenches. It’s time for dialogue and to imagine new paths”An institutional statement by the Mayor, Ada Colau, called for dialogue between Carles Puigdemont and Mariano Rajoy to scale down the tension and open up new means of resolving the political situation in Catalonia.
Recapping the events of 1 October, the Mayor noted that they open up a new window: “There is a before and an after. The results have opened the door to dialogue and international mediation and to a move towards new scenarios of self-rule”.
Colau used her speech to address Mariano Rajoy’s government, who she holds responsible for blocking dialogue, as well as Carles Puigdemont, warning him of the consequences a unilateral declaration of independence could have: “We’re at a historic crossroads. We can’t afford to put social cohesion or Catalan institutions in danger”. In the same vein, she called for a conciliatory gesture: “Let’s leave the language of conflict behind and give ourselves some time to open up sincere dialogue, with no conditions. It’s time to build bridges”.
The Mayor also sent a message to Barcelona residents: “Barcelona is a city of peace and dialogue which has managed to get through the most difficult moments. I have no doubt that’s how it will be again this time”.
Calling Europe: a task force for dialogue
The call from the Mayor also went out to the rest of Europe. In a meeting with European consuls and representatives from the European Parliament and the European Commission on 5 October, Ada Colau called for Europe to get involved to scale down the tension, proposing a platform for dialogue on Catalonia. This would mean a task force backed by the European Commission and involving experts, institutions, parliaments and all others who can help towards a solution to the political situation in Catalonia.