'I'd rather risk being a victim of injustice than keep away from the current political moment'
The candidate for president Jordi Turull offers Spain dialogue and mentions the referendum day “repression” in his speech
The candidate for Catalan president, Jordi Turull, made it clear that he would rather “risk being a victim of injustice than keep away from the current political moment,” referring to the possible prison sentence he is facing for the events leading to the declaration of independence last autumn. Indeed, he has already spent one month in pre-trial prison and, as soon as this Friday, he could be sent back to jail after a hearing in the Spanish Supreme Court. In his speech to defend his bid for president, he also mentioned the referendum day “repression.”
Dialogue was also one of the main topics of Jordi Turull’s speech to defend his candidacy. Although he found out that his candidacy would fail just minutes before the session started, the plenary session started at 5pm as expected. “We solemnly offer dialogue to Spain,” he said. “Why do they not want to sit down?” he asked, mentioning that even the Catalan president held talks with the post-Franco era Spanish president in 1977, while in exile.
While rejecting direct rule of Catalonia from Rajoy's executive, he said that Madrid's government is passing “from threats to repression” as every vote shows a relevant support for independence. Turull made part of his speech in Spanish and, explicitly referring to the rest of Spain, said that Catalonia only aims to “exercise full freedom”, as well as living in “peace” and justice.
Turull insisted on the idea that the December 21 election meant a victory for the pro-independence forces. “And with victories, come challenges,” he added. “We need each other to make a better country.” Towards the end of his hour-long speech, he also said that should he be sworn in, his government will aim to “reach out for dialogue,” because “the essence of democracy and the will of the Catalan people is at stake.”