Thursday, 5 March 2020
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
41. To ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade the efforts he has made to encourage dialogue to resolve the political impasse in Catalonia; the intervention he has made to secure the release of elected representatives currently held in custody in Spain as a result of the referendum on independence organised by the Catalan Parliament; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [2922/20]
My Department follows developments in Spain closely and I am aware of the legal cases to which the question refers.
I maintain contacts with my Spanish counterparts on a range of issues, including the situation in Catalonia.
The question of Catalan independence remains a deeply divisive and contentious issue in Catalonia and in the rest of Spain. I understand a process of dialogue recently commenced and that this is intended to last some time, with a variety actors appointed to discuss various issues of concern.
The constitutional and political arrangements in Spain are matters to be determined by their own citizens, through their own democratic processes and institutions, in keeping with the rule of law. We respect the constitutional and territorial integrity of Spain. It would therefore not be appropriate for me to comment further on the matter.