Catalan Independence Referendum: Opinions from Catalonia (EXCLUSIVE)
The world number one topic today is the expected independence referendum of Catalonia and the developments around it. Despite the warning of the official Madrid that no referendum can take place, as well as its various actions to stop Catalans holding a referendum, the independence supporters do not give up. However, it should be mentioned that even among Catalans there are divided opinions on whether they should be independent from Spain or not.
"Armedia" IAA has talked with several Catalans to understand the moods there and what they think about the October 1 referendum.
"I will vote in favor of Catalonia's independence for many reasons. First of all we want to protect our culture and language that was forbidden during the Civil War and it's been mistreated ever since the dictatorship's crackdown. We also have economic reasons to want to split from Spain. We pay the highest taxes in Spain and get 38% less in return. The government has hardly invested any money in improving infrastructures, where they are investing in useless high speed trains to nowhere or airports without passengers, with the only aim of getting votes. We want to rule ourselves," Sílvia Canet, a gift shop co-owner in Catalonia said in a talk with "Armedia" IAA, answering to the question whether she supports the idea of Catalonia’s independence.
Ester Vilajoana, a coach in Catalonia also said that wants independent Catalonia, the main reason for it calling the way the Spanish Government treats Catalans and Catalonia.
"We have been fighting for many years with the Spanish government to have better funding. We are a nation and we want to be recognized and respected," Elisenda Coma De Pagès, a specialist of marketing said adding that they want a free country, where the people can say how they want it.
In contrast to these opinions, Sergio Herrera, an export manager in Catalonia said that he is against the referendum. "I am against the illegal referendum because the Catalan government lies to the Catalan citizens"
Those people that talked with "Armedia" IAA are sure that despite the actions of Madrid, Catalans will vote.
"Spain's government is threatening people with thousands of policemen bullying citizens and forbidding universal rights such as freedom of expression. But we are not afraid anymore, and we are determined to peacefully stand for our rights. So I'm confident that we will vote," Sílvia Canet said.
As for the outcome of the referendum, if it takes place at all, the respondents, even Sergio, who is against it, say that most probably it will be a positive one.
"My feeling is that there is a majority of Catalans pro-independence now. So the vote for independence will win," Ester Vilajoana said.
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