Interview with Oriol Junqueras, Vice President of the Generalitat de Catalunya in El Punt Avui.


Xevi Xirgo – ESTREMERA

Interview with Oriol Junqueras

“The CUP must be part of the solution, not the problem”
“They sell difficult times that demand our commitment, and not make it easy for those who want us”
“Yes, the strategy of proposing Jordi Sánchez has the support of ERC”

Oriol Junqueras answered the interview from the prison of Estremera. The complication and the time that has elapsed between questions and answers has, however, made some (such as those related to the decision of Judge Llarena about Jordi Sànchez) to be outdated. It has been chosen, however, to keep them textual.
-How are you?
Well enough. With energy And aware that captivity can be long.
-Are they treated you well?
I do not get my chin I have a good relationship with prisoners, I try to help them when they ask for it. I do sports, I read and write a lot.
-Do you expect to be released at a certain time before the trial?
Hopefully! But the truth is that to date they have denied all the resources. Better not conceive any hope in vain.
-Do you understand why you, Forn, Cuixart and Sánchez are in jail and the rest do not?
Some of us have been chosen arbitrarily, I interpret, depending on the role they attach to us. In any case, I am glad for all those who were released. I hope to meet them all once and embrace them.
-Do you trust a fair trial?
Judge it yourself. I think everyone is aware of where we are and for what reason we are prisoned.
-Do you understand that some members of the government and the president went in Brussels? If you had now to decide, would you do the same again?
I understand it and I respect it, honestly. And yes, I would do the same again.
-And what do you think about Anna Gabriel being in Switzerland?
It is a personal decision that I respect. I do not have to judge anyone. I wish them all the luck and the best of the successes.
-Without you and the others imprisoned, the story of judicial defenses in Spain that would take place from Brussels and Switzerland would not be so strong, right?
It is obvious that without prisoners there would be no exiles. If there were no imprisoned people in Spain there would not be any person who would leave for political reasons.
-President Puigdemont said a few days ago that it was a mistake not to have declared independence on 1O, and that Catalonia was prepared to hold it. Do you agree?
When the hare is already fleeing few tips from the hunter, said Guillem de Berguedà. I do not have to check the past but think about building a future in peace and freedom. We are not Republic but we will end up being if a democratically sound majority wants it. What I do not see is a future in the Kingdom of Spain, honestly.

-How much do you and Puigdemont do not talk about? The president explained that he sent a letter to all political prisoners. You did not receive it?
It is not the moment of reproaches. Hard enough is everything. We need cohesion and at the same time add complicities. He does not take the crime and the reproach nowhere. I take the opportunity to send a brotherly hug to the five companions that are in Brussels.

-Do you Share the ‘step next’ strategy to Puigdemont, suggesting that Sanchez has relieve him?
Yes. It has the support of ERC.
Do you think Judge Llarena will allow the inauguration of Sánchez?
There are very clear legal precedents. I suppose this is the way it should continue to be. Now, we also know how Spanish justice has acted. The European Court of Human Rights has repeatedly sanctioned it. It is surprising that if one is not guilty until the contrary is demonstrated and with firm judgment, he is absent either of the provisional prison or of the restriction of fundamental rights.
-Do you think that when Puigdemont resigned his investiture in favor of Sánchez, the candidate should have been you as vice president?
It seems to me that I help you not to open this folder anymore. ERC is generous, it has always been. Like anybody It will continue to be because the important thing is to do government. If this does not come from people, it should not depend on any of them. Making government is the priority. The names are secondary.

-But will you be vice president of the government, in the new executive, as a way of legitimizing the previous government? Do you want to be?
It is a decision that must be taken based on multiple circumstances. In any case ERC has people more prepared than I. I insist, this is not about people.

-Do you feel alone? Do you receive correspondence? What do they say?
I have never felt alone. I have a family that loves me, a political family that loves me too and tells me so, friends and letters in plenty of countless people. I try to read all of them, all those that come to me at least, and I respond, but it is sometimes difficult to provide.

-The preventive prison they imposed on you is also a punishment for your families because they keep you away from Catalonia. Do you trust that, if there is no probation, there is an approach to Catalan prisons?
It would be logical. No longer for me but to avoid anxiety and additional suffering for our families. It is very unfair, it is even cruel, that harm our children. What bad they have done to have to travel to Estremera to see a little, once a month, his father?

-What do you think of the Council of the Republic that is intended to start up in Brussels? Can it be done what can not be done in Catalonia?
What I want is that everyone works for freedom, with efficiency and willingness to serve.
-And in Catalonia, what should has to be done? What is the strategy?
Add, add, add and persevere. We are a democratic movement and our force lies in people, we must provide a solid political, transversal majority that overcomes the conservative alliance that wants to paralyze all changes. Much of the country has already changed. What happened at the dawn of October was decisive. The Republican movement has come to stay, rout and build a new country at the service of everyone. I am aware of the difficulties but also optimistic. Today we represent a movement in defense of the civil and political rights of all, in defense of freedom, against authoritarianism.
-Do you think that once there is a government, the 155 will be withdrawn? And once the 155 is retired, Catalonia will be able to return to a certain normality? Or is this normality no longer going back?
What will no longer come is autonomism unless instead of adding complicity we reduce them. The fastest way to go back to autonomy is to become a noisy minority. They sell difficult times that demand our commitment and not make it easy for those who would want us outside institutions and cornerstones. The strategy of when the worst is not true. It has never been. When worse, worse. And when better, better.
It seems logical not to put more people at risk, and not to make decisions that involve more imprisonments or imputed.
It seems logical, yes. Especially if it does not bring us anywhere. The sacrifice must serve to advance not to retreat.
-This is not, however, the strategy of the CUP, and it will be an indispensable partner for the government … What do you think of the CUP?
They may help, get involved and be part of the solution, not the problem. They must be part of the rush forest. If they are there they are strengthened. If they do not weaken it. Sort and right.
-What do you think of what Santi Vila says in his latest book?
In life there are times when you have to be silent. For respect to others but also to yourself. The human stature of a person is also defined by what he does not say, and what he says and when he says it.


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