During the press conference held today in the Palau, the President of the Generalitat, Artur Mas expressed his “most sincere” condolences to the families of the victims, both on a personal level and on behalf of the Catalan Government.
The accident occurred this morning when flight 4U 9525 travelling from Barcelona to Dusseldorf on an Airbus A320 aircraft crashed in the French Alps region between Barcelonnette and Digne. President Mas and several members of the Executive Council have cancelled their official agendas as sign of respect. Furthermore, the flags of the Palau de la Generalitat will be flying at half-mast, also as sign of respect for the A320 victims and their families.
During the press conference, Artur Mas also conveyed the Executive’s “sentiment of understanding” with the victims’ families and announced that the response strategy was already fully underway to help the families “in these very difficult moments and to fully support them with everything that is necessary in the spirit of easing the proceedings as much as possible during such tragic circumstances”.
In this regard, the President explained that the Government has implemented “all the necessary services and has put them at the disposal of the families”. Similarly, the Ministry of Health will offer psychological attention to the families while the Ministry of Justice has provided a team of forensic experts. Additionally, transportation will also be made available to the families wishing to travel to France.
Artur Mas explained that he had received the news of the tragedy during today’s meeting with the Executive Council where it was immediately decided that Vice President Joana Ortega, joined by Foreign and EU Affairs Secretary Roger Albinyana, would travel to France at the site of the accident to “be at the disposal of the French authorities and, in collaboration with the Spanish authorities, mobilize all the necessary support”. Similarly, the Ministers for Home Affairs and Territory and Sustainability, Ramon Espadaler and Santi Vila, respectively, went to the Barcelona – El Prat International Airport to coordinate the necessary procedures for the purpose of attending the families of victims on-board the aircraft.
The President stressed that his Executive is and will be in constant contact with the French and Spanish authorities to collaborate as much as possible in this operation. In this respect, Mas pointed out that he had exchanged a telephone conversation with the president of the Spanish government, Mariano Rajoy, as well as with the State’s Opposition Leader, Pedro Sánchez, and the French Consul General.