(Signed by MEP’s Ramon Tremosa and Raül Romeva, and former MEP Oriol Junqueras; this letter has been edited by a Col·lectiu Emma’s friend)
Saturday, September 29, 2012
Dear President Schulz:
We are writing you with regard to the public declarations made by Mr. Alejo Vidal Quadras, vice-president of the European Parliament, concerning a possible military intervention in Catalonia.
On September 28th, Mr. Alejo Vidal Quadras participated in the Intereconomía program ‘El Gato al Agua’, and openly called on the Spanish vice-president, Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría, to prepare a brigadier general from the Guardia Civil and send him to Catalonia in order to dissolve Catalonia’s local government.
Mr. Vidal Quadras literally said “The referendum that has been called [for Catalonia self-determination] is illegal. An institution of the Spanish Government, the Parliament of Catalonia, cannot make a decision outside the current system. Other than going to the Constitutional court, you have to do something else: Article 155 of the Constitution provides a mechanism for taking over an autonomous region, if it fails to follow the law. […] The military, which I mentioned before, must relieve the Mossos [Catalan Police] of their duty. And that’s it. And if people take to the streets, that’s fine. They cannot survive demonstrating for more than a month. If this attitude of rebellion persists, the government, must take control of this rebellious autonomy. […] We must use legitimate and prudent force.”
Under no circumstances can we accept that a Vice President of the European Parliament call for a military intervention against citizens of the Union who are peacefully demonstrating their beliefs. We remind you that all the demonstrations in Catalonia as well as the declaration of the Catalan Parliament have been carried out with strictly democratic procedures. These threats violate the freedom of expression of many people in Catalonia and the normal democratic procedures in Catalonia and Spain. It is, indeed, a clear violation of the concept that military power should be subordinate to the civilian and democratic decisions made by citizens.
Mr. Vidal Quadras’ threats are inappropriate and outrageous and bring shame to the European Parliament, a truly democratic institution. As Vice-president of the European Parliament, Mr. Vidal Quadras should respect the Union’s fundamental principals, reflected in Article 3 of the TEU, where it states “1. The Union’s aim is to promote peace, its values and the well-being of its peoples.” and “2. The Union shall offer its citizens an area of freedom, security and justice without internal frontiers, (…)”
As Members of this chamber, we do not accept that anyone incite military forces to resolve conflicts within the Union, and we call on you, Mr. President, to react firmly to these declarations, and reinforce the foundations of the Union, which guarantee peace in Europe. The EU is a beacon of freedom and democracy as they are enshrined in articles 2 and 3 of the Treaty of the Union, and we call for your responsibility to guarantee a proper representation of the European Parliament through their vice-presidents.
We ask you to ensure that Mr.Vidal Quadras make a public apology for this scandal. Otherwise, we trust you will take the necessary action to restore the honour of this democratic chamber.