Assemblea denounces the rise of hate speech, intolerance and criminalization of the Catalan people before the United Nations

The Catalan National Assembly has taken part in the 16th session of the United Nation’s Forum on Minority Issues to denounce the rise of hate speech, intolerance and criminalization of Catalans, as well as the stigmatization of the teaching and use of the Catalan language.

The Catalan National Assembly has participated in the 16th session of the United Nation’s forum on Minority Issues and denounced the rise of hate speech, intolerance and criminalization of the Catalan people, and stigmatization of Catalan language. The meeting took place in Geneva on the 30th November and the 1st December, and focused on cohesive societies and minorities.

Assemblea representative and International Commission Coordinator Bàrbara Roviró denounced that since Catalonia’s 2017 referendum, smear campaigns and public debates seeking to stigmatize Catalans through mass and social media have accompanied the political persecution of the Catalan people. In Spain, the undemocratic and authoritarian legacy of Franco can still be seen in Spanish institutions, and most Spanish political parties use Catalanophobia as an electoral tool, Roviró stressed.

In this sense, the Assemblea representative condemned the growing trend of hate speech and intolerance against Catalans. This practice reinforces political hostility, repression and the criminalization of Catalan civil society, and serves to consolidate an alarming trend of discrimination against the rights of the Catalan people.

For these reasons, Assemblea calls on the competent UN authorities to ensure that the Spanish authorities comply with international standards and obligations in protecting the rights of Catalans from hate and Catalanophobia. The organisation also notes that the right to self-determination is the only valid and effective instrument to overcome Spain’s structural and historical discrimination that the Catalan people suffer.

The Catalan National Assembly takes part in international human rights meetings and forums regularly as part of its international advocacy work, denouncing violations of rights by Spanish institutions against the people of Catalonia. The UN Forum on Minority Issues meets annually and is open to member states, UN mechanisms, bodies and agencies, NGOs, experts and organizations.