Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Cut to eight communities and scenes of tension between protesters and police

Farmers in central Catalonia left “with a good taste in their mouths” after reaching an agreement with all parliamentary groups except the PP and Vox

The review of drought restrictions, the acceleration of aid payments and the rationalization of bureaucracy are the three sections of the agreement reached by the representatives of farmers in Vallès and the Bages region – central Catalonia – after the meeting with the president of Parliament and parliamentary groups.

On Wednesday at 8:00 pm the meeting between representatives of the main platforms and unions ended with president of the Generalitat, Pere Aragonès, and the councilor of Climate Action, David Mascort. Dissatisfaction after these negotiations encouraged fifty farmers to go to the Parliament of Catalonia this morning after completing the day of protests by spending the night with their tractors in Gran Via.

After meeting with the president of the Parliament and the main political groups, Arnau Villomar, from the 6-F platform in central Catalonia, assured that “they are satisfied” with the results of the negotiations. “We were very tired, but the two nights on the road were worth it. Not only have we voiced our concerns and been heard, but we have come back with guarantees,” he said.

Villomar also participated last Wednesday in the meeting with president: “Last night there was a lot of tension in the square and we stayed to show that this is not a parade of tractors or butifarrada in the city,” he added.

Joan Rius, one of his colleagues, explained the main points of the agreement signed by all the parliamentary groups, except PP and Vox: “It includes all our concerns, but there are three issues that show their urgency: drought restrictions, aid payments and the reduction of bureaucratic burden.”

Farmers agreed with political representatives to review the prohibition of the Generalitat’s drought emergency plan, which reduces the water available for livestock by 50%. “They promised us that they will change the design of these restrictions for livestock farming, it is a fundamental part of society, without which we have no food,” Rius pointed out.

The second issue to be highlighted is the payment of outstanding aid from the past two years, which has already been paid to most communities. The farmers requested that the cash delivery procedures be expedited. Bureaucracy, a word that has not stopped ringing in protests in recent days, is the third of the agreements to be highlighted. The political groups are committed to work with government institutions and other autonomies to simplify the procedures (required by agricultural and climate regulations) and which, they admit, represents a considerable increase in their time to work.

Before the march, Rius and Villomar recalled that “the struggle has not ended, it has changed,” and that the mobilization will continue in different ways until these agreements are fulfilled. In addition, they thanked their families for the work they did at home so that they could come here to save the Catalan countryside.

World Nation News Desk
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