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Catalonia, in Spain or not? Independence vote is set for Nov 9

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The Catalonian government wants to hold an independence vote on November 9th that the Spanish government says is illegal.

Compared to Scotland, where a referendum was negotiated between Edinburgh and London, the disagreement between Barcelona and Madrid makes the whole process more complex for Catalonia and its people, reports.

With time the independence debate has filtered down to Barcelona’s working class and beyond to the suburbs and their non-Catalonian wards and districts.

In Carmel for example, perched on the hills, many residents are from Andalucia in the south, and there are many recent arrivals from the rest of the world. Do these people want to leave Spain?

José Ángel Rodríguez is a 38-year-old Spanish and Catalan Socialist trades unionist. His first language is Spanish but he has recently changed his position on independence, which he now conditionally supports.

“There’s always been this independence of identity based on language, culture, and a personal identification with an idea of nation. But there’s another independence that’s not based on identity. It says I can be Spanish, I can feel Spanish, and also be and feel independent. I can justify both. Because it’s not a question of identity, it’s a question of conviviality, of society.

“Franco died and in 1978 Spain built itself around his right wing, and the democratic right, and the democratic left. In 2014 we want to build Catalonia with the democratic right. Catalonia cannot just be a creation of the left, this is a mistake. The building of a new society needs to be done by everyone, the immigrants, the bourgeoisie, the left, the right, the rich and the poor.”

November 4 2014, 16:45

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