The Repression in Barcelona Is the True Face of the European Union

11 a.m., Tuesday, 3 October 2017

[Editorial Statement by the Democratic Independent Workers Party of France / POID]

The Civil Guard breaking down the doors of polling stations with battering rams and snatching ballot-boxes out of the hands of peaceful scrutineers; hundreds of citizens – youth, elderly people, and even children – physically abused, beaten, injured: the violence unleashed against the Catalan people by the Rajoy government on 1 October confirms, to anyone who might have doubted it, that the institutions of the Spanish monarchy are indeed the legacy of the Francoist dictatorship.

An unholy alliance of all the European leaders – of the European Commission in Brussels and the heads of the various governments, beginning with Macron – joined together to defend Rajoy and the Francoist monarchy.

The same people who usually claim to support universal suffrage; the same people who, like Macron, claim legitimacy after receiving barely 15% of the votes of the electorate in the first round of the presidential election; those same people, faced with a people who for once had the chance to use a ballot-paper to express their will, decreed that any means are acceptable to silence the Catalan people.

The voting ban, when it is a question of voting to freely decide one’s future, is the true face of the European Union.

To all those who for decades have been claiming that the European Union is a bulwark of democracy and peace, the peoples and workers of Europe are entitled to say: the violence of the repression unleashed on the streets of Catalonia on 1 October, that is the true face of your “European Union”.

As far as the Democratic Independent Workers Party (POID) is concerned, all the workers and all the peoples of Europe share a common interest: democracy must be respected. All the workers and all the peoples of Europe share a common interest: Catalonia must be able to decide its own future.

We do not join those who are asking Macron to intervene as a mediator! As if Macron did not publicly support Rajoy! As if Catalonia’s fate could be decided in Paris!

It is not mediation by Macron or others that will resolve the question posed in Catalonia. Respect for democracy means the people’s right to freely decide its future (including to decide whether or not to separate).

To those who claim that the Catalan people must stay united with the other peoples of the Spanish State, and beyond that with the peoples of the whole of Europe, the workers and youth are entitled to retort: yes, the free and fraternal union of the peoples is a necessity; but, specifically, a union can only be free if all of its component parts are free to unite and to separate. A free union cannot be imposed.

As a supporter of a free union of the free peoples and nations of the whole of Europe, the POID protests most strongly against the repression that is affecting the workers and people of Catalonia. It stands in solidarity with their wish to decide their future for themselves.

The fact that the institutions of the European Union are joining the Francoist monarchy in a common front to oppose the Catalan people’s right to decide its own future is no great surprise: those institutions are a bulwark of defence for the capitalists and the speculators.

Those who oppose the Catalan people’s right to decide its own future are violating the democracy for which they claim to stand.

Let everyone be aware: it is the oppression of the people of Catalonia and the repression it is facing today that are leading to a breakaway and independence.

Conversely, it is the peoples’ right to self-determination, the right to freely decide whether to unite or separate, which allows and will allow the free union of the workers and peoples of the Spanish State, and, beyond that, of the whole of Europe.

Stop the repression!

Freedom of choice for the people of Catalonia!

Break with the institutions of the Francoist monarchy, the European Union and the Fifth Republic!

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