The new head of the separatist Aragon government in Catalonia

The new head of the separatist Aragon government in Catalonia

The 38-year-old politician from the leftist party ERC received 74 out of 135 votes in Barcelona’s regional parliament on Friday. In addition to the 33 delegates of the ERC, MPs from two other separatist parties also voted for Aragon, the liberal-conservative Junxcat and the radical Left Cup.

In the early elections to the Catalan parliament, parties advocating secession from Spain won an absolute majority for the first time in mid-February. However, the parties are divided on the road to independence. While JuntsxCat and the CUP intend to implement a new independence referendum following an unsuccessful attempted secession in the autumn of 2017, the ERC advocates negotiations with the central government in Madrid.

Due to these differences, the first two attempts to form a separatist government in late March were thwarted. However, a basic agreement was reached a few days ago. Aragon promised that he would “walk the path of freedom” during his tenure. “I want us to be like Scotland. And I want the Spanish state to behave like Britain in 2014.” He was referring to the referendum in Scotland, however, the majority spoke against independence.

Catalonia was forcibly put under administration by the then conservative central government in 2017, following an illegal independence referendum. The then regional president Carles Puigdemont fled to Belgium. Many separatists were sentenced to lengthy prison terms.

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