After meeting with Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez today at the Palau de la Generalitat, the president of the Government of Catalonia, Quim Torra, said: “We need to negotiate to address the root of the political conflict and find real solutions.” “We’re not here to generate empty promises or false expectations; we want solutions,” he added. After a meeting that lasted an hour and a half, the head of the executive told the media that the “conditions and format need to be set” so that the negotiating table can “move forward”.
Torra told PM Sánchez that he wants to head a negotiating table “led by two political leaders” and aimed at “addressing the conflict and resolving it politically”. “If he’s genuinely committed to resolving the conflict, in Catalonia we’ve been prepared for dialogue and negotiation for a long time.” However, President Torra expressed some reservations: “We know what we’re going to defend at the negotiating table, but I’m sorry to say that we still don’t know what the Spanish government’s proposal is.”
The head of the executive said he was prepared to convene the negotiating table immediately: “I wish it hadn’t been so difficult to get the Spanish government to sit down and talk. That’s not our fault.”
During the meeting, Torra urged the Spanish PM to recognise that addressing the issue of the prisoners and exiles must be part of the solution: “If we don’t find a solution for the prisoners and exiles, we won’t be able to resolve the political conflict.” In his briefing to the press, the president also stressed the importance of maintaining unity among pro-independence forces, arguing that “without unity, responsibility and a commitment to putting Catalonia’s national interests first”, it will be impossible to reach a solution.
At the meeting with the Spanish prime minister, Torra also offered to designate specialist teams to prepare the negotiating table to be headed by the two leaders in order to ensure that it is “really useful and effective”. The president said PM Sánchez had agreed to this proposal. According to Torra, the role of these teams will be to set the content, format and date for the first meeting as well as sketching out how the negotiations will move forward in the medium term.
The president also said he will pass on the results of the meeting to the roundtable of pro-independence actors, which includes the three groups represented in the Catalan parliament, pro-independence organisations, and the Council for the Republic. Torra stressed his conviction that he must act based on the “strength that come from unity”.