The President of the Autonomous Canary Islands Government, Fernando Clavijo, has this week called for dialogue and peace, as well as reform to the Spanish Constitution because, in his opinion, the application of Article 155 “neither fixes the problem” nor can it be ignored that there are more than two million Catalans who want independence from Spain.

The Autonomous Government of Catalunya, The Generalitat, attempted to hold a long-time promised referendum on October 1st regarding a question of the region’s continuation as a part of modern Spain.  The Spanish government, in Madrid, not only refused dialogue but attempted to brutally put down attempts to vote on the question of Catalunyan independence, sending thousands of extra national police and Guardia Civil to close polling stations.  Despite most unity supporters staying away, more than 2 million Catalans voted overwhelmingly in favour of secession from Spain and an independent future.  Those voting in favour of independence represented just under 50% of the electorate, or a third of the total population of the region.

Fernando Clavijo told journalists that after being made aware of the willingness of the President of Catalunya’s Generalitat, Carles Puigdmont, to declare independence in a new plenary session, he is “deeply concerned” because he feels there is no clear reason to justify the decision.

“We have been talking about dialogue, understanding, calm and openness [toward] the amendment of the Constitution to be better accommodated within the State, and we did not expect a response of this caliber,” said the Canarian president.

With regards to the implementation of article 155, he said that it’s degree of application should be evaluated, as to the length of time applied, and considers that it is anyone’s desire to have to apply it or interfere in an Autonomous Community, although the State obviously has to articulate the resources at its disposal to defend itself.

Article 155 of the Spanish Constitution, of 1978, provides the state government in Madrid powers to suspend autonomous regional rule, if it is deemed necessary to protect the constitution and the laws of Spain.  One government minister last year, when questions, described it as “the nuclear option”.

The Canary Islands will defend moderation, proportionality and common sense in this area, Clavijo added, since the applying article 155 of the Spanish Constitution does not fix the problem “nor can we ignore that there are more than two million Catalans who want to be independent and that cannot be addressed through the application of the rule, that has to be addressed through dialogue, pedagogy and tranquility.”

“These are the challenges of historic moments that make all the difference and there is a need to separate politics, acting responsibly and include many doses of effort and peace,” he said.

Source: La Provincia