Catalan speaker to bypass meeting with Spanish king
Torrent will notify appointment of new President of Catalonia in writing
The speaker of the Catalan Parliament Roger Torrent will not ask to meet Spanish King Felipe VI to officially notify him of Quim Torra’s appointment as the new President of Catalonia. The decision bypasses a formality required by protocol in yet another example of the virtually non existent complicity between institutions in Catalonia and Spain.
Torrent alleged that the institutional tradition changed when Felipe VI refused to meet the former speaker, Carme Forcadell, when Carles Puigdemont was sworn in as Catalan president two years ago. Nor did the former Spanish king, Juan Carlos I, meet Puigdemont’s predecessor back in 2012, due to health issues.
Torrent stressed that the meeting would not be appropriate from a political perspective, as the Spanish king did not show support for the victims of police violence in last October’s referendum on independence, nor has he recognized that Spain has “political prisoners”—referring to the Catalan leaders jailed for their role in the independence bid.
Quim Torra is expected to be sworn in today in parliament with the votes of the two main pro-independence parties in the chamber, and thanks to the abstention of the far-left CUP party, after a first attempt to appoint him failed on Saturday. Torrent will notify the appointment of the new head of government by letter.