Catalan Minister for Foreign Affairs, Institutional Relations and Transparency, Alfred Bosch, addressed the European Committee of Regions’ (CoR) plenary session this Thursday. “Certainly fundamental rights have been challenged in the whole of Europe, and in Spain as well” he warned the Committee members and called them to “put into Catalan citizens’ shoes”.
“We ask you to feel like we feel, we ask you to feel Catalan, we ask you to be Catalan, we ask you to act Catalan”, he said.
“Democracy, human rights and dialogue they have all been challenged in the Kingdom of Spain”, Bosch denounced. “How can we be so strict with the countries that want to be part of the EU and not so strict with the estate members? We are sending the wrong message”, he lamented
Catalan Minister Bosch addressed the Committee members and asked them whether they saw the violence deployed by Spanish Police on the 1st of October referendum. He also remembered that the elected Government in Catalonia was sacked after Spain’s imposition of direct rule and some of its members are still in preventive prison, more than a year after the referendum, for allowing people to vote. “And I ask you: can you remain in silence?” he asked the auditorium. “We are fellow citizens, we share fundamental values, fundamental rights. We are all Europeans. Let’s share those values, we’ll uphold them.”
Bosch’s intervention in the European Committee of Regions’ plenary session was part of the body’s debate on fundamental rights and the EU values and was chaired by EU Commissions’ VP Frans Timmermans. It also had Court of Justice of the EU President, Koen Lenaerts, amongst its attendants.
Since February 2019, Bosch is full member of the CoR due to its role as Catalan Minister for Foreign Affairs.