What you need to know about the Dialogue Table 2.0

Generalitat / EFE

Dialogue Table

The eldest of the Mossos, Josep Lluís Trapero, waited at 3:00 pm in Plaça de Sant Jaume. The swarm of armored cars arrives and Pedro Sánchez emerges from one of them. He receives him and Pere Aragonés is already waiting at the door of the Palau. Greetings in the chest, with all the honors and review the regional police. There are barely fifty people in the vicinity protesting.

Thus began the second appointment of the Dialogue Table agreed in its day by ERC and the PSOE during the negotiations for the investiture of Pedro Sánchez. And things have changed a lot after the first meeting, days before the declaration of the state of alarm. In fact, in the photo only Sánchez and Aragonès remain (but this time as president of the Catalan Government).

A meeting in two phases: first, a meeting between Sánchez and Aragonès, then they met for a few minutes with the two delegations and left the way for the ministers and councilors to put some questions in black on white. But without representation from Junts, which was expelled by Aragonés for proposing as members leaders who are not in the autonomous government (the pardoned Jordi Sànchez and Jordi Turull and the spokesperson in Congress, Miriam Nogueras).

Sánchez and Aragonès have been face to face for two hours. And they have drawn several conclusions. The first: the positions are very far apart, as both leaders have recognized. The Catalan has put the referendum and self-determination on the table, to which the Spanish president has responded emphatically: “they are not possible.”

But they have also conspired to continue with the work of the Table, both consider it the appropriate instrument to try to channel the political crisis that has been going on in Catalonia for a decade. Aragonès has demanded “perseverance” to achieve his objectives, while Sánchez has asked for “common sense” and a “true” dialogue to reach agreements within the framework of the Constitution.

Quique García / EFE

Sánchez and Aragonès

Something that the two have agreed on is that you cannot set dates to try agreements. The President of the Government has said during his appearance, separately from Aragonñes, that “without haste but without pause, and without deadlines.” Also the Catalan has not wanted to fix periods of time and has asserted that he will pay attention to the fact that concretions are achieved. The two have thus given each other oxygen, at a time when they are being squeezed by the other sides (fierce criticism from the right in Spain and pressure from the more orthodox independence movement of Junts and the CUP).

In this sense, the Prime Minister has carried the reunion agenda under his arm to show his will for dialogue. Sánchez wants to talk about investments and measures that affect the day-to-day life of the Catalans. Of course, it has definitely buried the possibility of the extension of El Prat, on which they have spoken for a few minutes, seeing that the part of the Government is not united and does not have a mature decision. What they have not touched, as he has revealed, is the future negotiation of the general budgets in Madrid between the coalition and Esquerra.

Aragonès has remarked that this Wednesday’s meeting is the “beginning” of a process of dialogue with the Government that pursues the objective of a referendum and amnesty (two points rejected by Sánchez). In fact, he has tried to sell that this meeting is the materialization of the “sit and talk” claimed by the independence movement, all after a Diada in which ERC has had to endure accusations of treason by the toughest sectors of sovereignty.

After the meeting between Sánchez and Aragonès, the two delegations have met. The Minister of the Presidency, Félix Bolaños, has been in charge of coordinating the work, in which the Second Vice President and Minister of Labor, Yolanda Díaz, and the Ministers Isabel Rodríguez (Territorial Policy) and Miquel Iceta (Culture) have participated. On the Catalan side, the ERC councilors Roger Torrent and Laura Vilagrá have been there (Moncloa reduced the participation on Tuesday night after learning that the members of Junts were falling).

Quique García / EFE

Meeting of the Dialogue Table

At that meeting, according to sources from La Moncloa, the atmosphere was “cordial.” It has been agreed, the central Government has informed, “start work to achieve a way out that allows for the recovery of normality in Catalonia after years of disagreements ”. “The two parties have agreed to hold regular meetings, also through discreet work, that allow progress in the objectives set,” they indicate from the central Executive.

“Both Executives have verified that they start from distant positions, but they share that the dialogue channel is the only channel to resolve their differences,” they explained from Moncloa. The members of the Government have transferred that “the model included in the Constitution is the only possible framework to recognize the enormous and rich diversity of the country, consolidate rights and guarantee the coexistence of a plural society like the Catalan one.”

In addition, both Sánchez with Aragonès and the delegation of the central Government to the Catalan have demanded that there also be dialogue in Catalonia and with all Catalans. The socialist president has said that the solution will not arrive tomorrow after this failed decade but he hopes that within a year it will be better than this. The climate, he recalled, is also better now than it was a year ago.

The dialogue starts with very different positions, far away … but without deadlines.

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Source: by www.huffingtonpost.es.

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