The leader of the opposition in the Parliament of Catalonia, the socialist Salvador Illa, on an institutional visit to Paris, has conveyed to his interlocutors his perception of the "majority desire of the Catalan citizens to turn the page" of the process and to "open up to a time new". Illa, who has maintained various contacts with the political, business and academic world for two days, highlighted in her meetings and events the "many strengths" of Catalan society, although she also admitted that "Catalonia must be politically organized".
"I have come to speak well of Catalonia," said the former minister in a meeting with the press, this Wednesday, at the prestigious Institute of Political Studies (Sciences Po), where he had lunch with his dean, the former Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs Arancha González Laya . Later he held a discussion with the historian and Hispanist Benoît Pellistrandi, author of Les fractures de l'Espagne and Le laberynthe catalan.
The Socialist leader has insisted that the situation in Catalonia is very different from that of five years ago, "although work still needs to be done to order the country politically, including Parliament, which has an acting presidency." Illa emphasized that "dialogue between Catalans must be opened" and recalled that there was an agreement in this regard with the Esquerra Republicana that this party "is failing to comply with".
"I think that what the citizens want is for the Government of the Generalitat to govern, which is what in my opinion it is not doing, that it focus its energies on the concerns of the citizens, on the cost of living, the energy transition, improvement and the exercise of self-government powers," said the head of the opposition. He defined the Government of Aragonès as "a minority government that has not done its job".
Illa was willing to agree on the Catalan budgets, although he repeatedly warned that "we are at the beginning of the beginning" and regretted that Aragonès had "lurched" and did not start negotiating as early as August, when the PSC raised it. The socialist leader asks to negotiate "equal to equal, face to face", given that the socialists have 33 deputies, the same as ERC but with 50,000 more popular votes. "It is not about a highway, a hospital or a school," he warned, and made it clear that all the content will be thoroughly reviewed and very important conditions will be set to say yes.
The former Minister of Health reiterated his willingness to compromise, to carry out "a useful and serious policy", but without haste. The objective "is not to rescue a failed government" but "to prevent the citizens of Catalonia from paying for the piper of this government." Regarding Aragonés' hesitations, Illa stressed: "It would be good if he clarified what situation he is in."
On her first day, Illa met with a leader of the French employers' association and with the delegate of the Generalitat in Paris, Josep Maria Galí. This Wednesday he met with UNESCO's deputy director general for education, Stefania Gianni, and with the mayoress of Paris, Anne Hidalgo. After the dialogue with the Hispanicist Pellistrandi, Illa attended the opening of an exhibition on Manuel Azaña at the Instituto Cervantes in the French capital.