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President Aragonès: "We must strengthen our ties with European institutions to the greatest extent possible"

event_note Press Release

President Aragonès: "We must strengthen our ties with European institutions to the greatest extent possible"

  1. Europe Day celebrates 74 years since the Schuman Declaration
  2. The head of the Executive highlighted Europeanism “as a key point in defining our country’s future”


The President of the Government of Catalonia, Pere Aragonès i Garcia, led the events marking Europe Day, which took place in the Palau de la Generalitat. He was accompanied by the Minister for Foreign Action and European Union, Meritxell Serret i Aleu. Aragonès said that given the challenges facing Europe, “we must strengthen our ties with European institutions to the greatest extent possible”.

During his speech, the head of the Catalan Government stressed the importance of celebrating Europe Day, which “today more than ever” signifies the values of “peace, solidarity, rights and freedoms and democracy”. The President also emphasised “the Europeanism of Catalan society” and “its commitment to the process of European construction”.

Likewise, Aragonès pointed out the challenges facing Europe today, including “climate change, which is very clear in our case, with a drought and with sustainability and energy sovereignty”, as well as “progress in rights and freedoms, democracy, peace and human rights”.

The head of the Executive condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which he said “is the most serious threat to Europe in recent years”, and acknowledged that“Catalonia has reacted by standing alongside Ukraine from day one” and accordingly, “also alongside the European Union as a whole”.

The President warned of the threat of a “xenophobic, exclusionary, authoritarian, discriminatory, racist, sexist, homophobic”far right, and added “it is completely hostile to the project of European construction”, and he maintained that “it has always fought Euroscepticism within European society”.

In the face of these challenges and threats, President Pere Aragonès reaffirmed his commitment to European construction, “to freedom and democracy”, because “we must preserve the memory of why the European Union project was born” in order to “overcome centuries of war and begin to build centuries of peace and prosperity”.

Aragonès concluded with the desire to bring Europe“even closer to its citizens, for it to highlight and recognise the linguistic rights of Catalans”, to become “more social and more prosperous, and fight resolutely against all forms of inequality”, as well as “being at the forefront in the fight against climate change”.

Meanwhile, the Minister for Foreign Affairs and European Union, Meritxell Serret, maintained that“we have to assert the founding principles of the European Union, of peace, solidarity and human dignity”. Serret pointed out that “the European project today lives under the threat of Putin’s regime, but also under the threat of the extreme right-wing forces that are trying to destroy Europe’s social cohesion”. She also stressed the importance of participating in the European elections on 9 June: “With these elections in mind, Catalonia reiterates its commitment to freedoms, democracy and human rights.”

The event was attended by the Head of the European Commission Representation in Barcelona, Manuel Szapiro; the Belgian Consul, Pierre-Emmanuel Brusselmans, representing the country that holds the presidency of the European Council for the next six months, and the head of the European Parliament’s Office in Barcelona, Sergi Barrera. On behalf of the Government, the event was attended by the Vice-President, Laura Vilagrà i Pons, and the Minister of Economy and Finance, Natàlia Mas Guix.