The president of the PNV, Andoni Ortuzar, met this Friday in Waterloo (Belgium) with the former Catalan president and leader of Junts Carles Puigdemont to “strengthen relations” and analyze “the complex political panorama” that has opened in Spain after the elections generals of July 23. It is the first meeting that both political leaders have had since Puigdemont fled Spain at the end of October 2017.
The meeting takes place in the middle of the debate on the investiture, in which the Basque and Catalan nationalist and independence parties will play a key role. It depends on them whether the socialist Pedro Sánchez can remain in La Moncloa, after the refusal that these formations have given to support the popular candidate, Alberto Núñez Feijóo. “The recent passage through the polls and the will of the Basque and Catalan citizens have made the votes of the five Jeltzales deputies (from the PNV) and the seven from Junts decisive for the formation of a Government in Spain,” the PNV emphasizes. and Junts in separate informative notes.
On Sunday, Ortuzar warned the PSOE that either Sánchez “seeks an agreement with the PNV and with Junts, or things will not work out” in a legislature that “is going to be different.” “There has to be a certain agreement, a certain understanding of how to organize this between Sánchez, Euskadi and Catalonia,” said Ortuzar. “(The socialist candidate) has the numbers because there are two realities: the Catalan nationalist and sovereigntist parties, and the nationalist parties,” he noted, reports José M. Abad. “We should be able to at least articulate the procedure between the three parties so as not to short-circuit each other,” he said in an interview in the Deia newspaper.
Puigdemont and Ortuzar, in Waterloo. PNV (EFE)
Ortuzar and Puigdemont spoke for two and a half hours in the company of the head of the Organization area of the PNV, Joseba Aurrekoetxea, and the general secretary of Junts, Jordi Turull. They have shared positions and expectations, says the PNV, about the “key role” that these two parties are going to play in the investiture process. “We had scheduled the visit to President Puigdemont in Waterloo for a long time, within the framework of the periodic contacts that we have been maintaining with Junts,” Ortuzar stated after the meeting. “It has been a very cordial and beneficial meeting in which, on the one hand, we have assessed the way in which we can intensify and optimize relations between both parties and between Euskadi and Catalonia. In short, we have had an interesting exchange of positions regarding negotiations that have not yet begun,” he added.
“The two parties play a key role in a possible negotiation for the investiture,” both parties have highlighted. After the recent Catalonia Day, on Monday, the president of Junts, Laura Borràs, endorsed the strategic turn that the party has taken by betting on dialogue with the Sánchez Government. “We have always said that political conflicts have to be resolved politically,” she said, and celebrated that “the Spanish State needs the independentists.”
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This Friday’s appointment does not mean that the PNV is going to act as an intermediary between Junts and the PSOE during the talks on Sánchez’s investiture, sources from the Basque party emphasize: “Not at all. We have not come (to Waterloo) for that, but to share reflections on the state of things and see how we can, since we are decisive, provide stability to the State while taking a step forward in the national recognition of Euskadi and Catalonia and towards another model of State,” add the same sources.
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