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The EU clothes Rajoy on Catalonia

The Spanish government avoids a formal or joint statement from all over Europe so as not to further institutionalize the conflict

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The EU clothes Rajoy on Catalonia

The European Union and its leaders yesterday uncracked in Brussels to Mariano Rajoy at a critical and crucial moment before conflict opened by separatist claims in Catalonia. Almost all heads of government and EU partners did, except with ir nuances Belgian prime Minister, but importance of supporting unity of Spain wanted to embody two main engines of new Europe, German Angel Merkel and French Emm Anuel Macron. Rajoy collected se adhesions as an unmistakable triumph to his sis but did not want to make statements or introduce matter officially at summit or ask a joint statement not to institutionalize a conflict that continues to consider a problem Internal.

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It's not on official agenda. And Spain is trying to lower its serious intensity by all means. But Catalan challenge crept in full yesterday at European Summit. The EU, led by Merkel and Macron, tuckeded Spanish Government yesterday in face of Catalonia's independence challenge. Merkel marked — as usual — pattern: "We support Spanish government." Macron was even more forceful and assured that summit will send "a message of unity around Spain". Only Belgian prime Minister, Charles Michel, left that script in midst of a diplomatic scuffle with Spanish delegation. All that declarative device contrasted with silence of Rajoy, who did not speak at his entrance or during summit, according to half a dozen sources.

Spain went even furr and halted any type of EU institutional declaration: Executive of Rajoy recognizes that problem exists, is re and that Catalonia has earned that gap, but is reluctant to give more flight because it prefers to consider something internal about what "There is no interest in it being a formal business of Council." The President of Council himself, Donald Tusk, admitted his "concern" about Catalonia but clarified that "re is no room for intervention" of EU in any mediation on this problem. Tusk avoided ruling on application of article 155 of Constitution and emphasized: "We all have our emotions, opinions and appraisals, but formally re is no room for EU intervention."

The great European crisis was first financial, n economic, social and migratory, later threatened with arrival of ultras to main chancelleries of Europe and, in a new abrupt turn of script, now reaches status of State Crisis in Spain with Secessionist temptations unleashed in EU's fifth economy. The cataract of views of EU leaders shows that Catalonia is already, long, a major European problem. The Moncloa doesn't deny it eir.

The government explained in Brussels: "Everything is negotiable;" "In Parliament, not on street"

J. C. C. P., Brussels

The Government of Mariano Rajoy has been pushed, in face of chain of unilateral and illegal actions of Catalan executive, to explain to defensive in international media its position on " largest constitutional crisis in Spain in decades." Several high-ranking Spanish government officials convened a briefing yesterday in Brussels at some 200 journalists accredited to European Union. About 70. The appointment served to verify that majority of foreign journalists are still interested in knowing reason why government of Rajoy does not open a dialogue with separatist executive of Carles Puigdemont and why it is not allowed in Catalonia a referendum of Self-Determination like one that was given in Scotland and that re itself allowed Constitution of United Kingdom.

Government sources were willing to "negotiate without limits, on law and Constitution". And y questioned journalists mselves, who were questioning m about how y think all of that would be done in ir own countries. And y responded: "In Parliament and not in street, as would be done in any democratic country and with respect to rules in force." In that line, same sources highlighted several times that ABC of all advanced democracies of our environment: "Everything can be spoken and changed, but following rules." "The law is result of dialogue." They also had to explain that in Spain re is a division of powers with judges and legislature, that Catalonia enjoyed a new autonomy until pressure of separatism has forced its own laws and that re has been voted in recent years more times than in Ning Somewhere in world. Finally y presumed that President Mariano Rajoy is acting throughout this crisis "with an immense amount of legal patience".

"Nationalist populism" (according to definition of Vice-President of European Commission, Frans Timmermans) yesterday found replica of leaders, who contrasted with mutism of Rajoy. "We are very inclined and support position of Spanish government," said Merkel, n adding that hopes that for Catalonia is "a solution based on Spanish Constitution." Macron closed ranks with Madrid. "It will be a council marked by a message of unity around our Member States against risks y face, of unity around Spain," said French president again resounding, with which Rajoy maintained his only bilateral meeting of this appointment.

But voices multiplied in a European Council which had to debate in ory on idleness of Brexit, migratory problems and relations with Turkey, Iran or North Korea, but in which re was what Anglo-Saxon call an elephant in Room: Cataluña. "No one in EU would recognize independence of Catalonia," said President of Parliament, Italian Antonio Tajani. Mark Rutte, Dutch prime minister, called for restoration of " constitutional order" and added: "It is a matter between Spain and a Spanish region." The Luxembourgish Xavier Bettel, Slovenian Miro Cerar, Chief of Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker. They all grabbed, with minimal variations, to that idea.

All but Belgian prime minister, French-speaking liberal Charles Michel, who has been calling for a dialogue in or out of Constitution for days and has harshly criticized images of 1-O. Police charges. "I continue to condemn all forms of violence and ask" Dialogue. I do not think that climbing is a good thing, he said on his arrival at Michel Summit, which governs hand of Flemish nationalists, one of few explíticos supports of Catalan government in Europe.

Rajoy, Silent

Rajoy did not want to talk about anything when he reached summit nor did he want to introduce Catalan conflict to offer his explanations in formal session. The sources consulted in Brussels hoped that Spanish President would refer to independence Challenge during informal dinner, in view of enormous interest in all delegations. The Spanish executive is aware of enormous echo that Catalan problem has achieved; But he doesn't want to institutionalize it. Nor can an open discussion be allowed on subject or come to refute complex positions.

The team of Rajoy explained that President agreed yesterday with a call to Pedro Sánchez, visiting in Brussels — details of answer this Saturday of executive, after knowing letter of Carles Puigdemont. Official sources of Moncloa ventured that activation of article 155 may be delayed even beyond a week, depending on speed of Senate, but did not clarify wher measures to be taken by Council of Ministers will be applied in a coup or step. "The 155 is not automatic and gives a wide margin to modulate response;" The only requirement is that your application has a temporal horizon, be it provided, intelligent, prudent, respectful and effective, "explained same sources. Effective is tantamount to "restoring legality and staunchinging wounds on fractured coexistence."


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