The ERC and Junts enter the ideological battle over immigration

The ERC and Junts enter the ideological battle over immigration

Gantz will update his speech on immigration soon, with a conference on the subject approved on Saturday in Morell. It will be there where they define their priorities, but the training sources already indicate what their three main focus points are: controlling flows – by agreeing distribution quotas between communities – and improving the integration of new arrivals – through Catalan language and culture courses as well as for minors through Reception classes – most controversially, the expulsion of returning migrants.

The party's Secretary General, Jordi Turol, said last Thursday that “whether or not many of the returnees will be expelled must be determined from Catalonia.” Fox Or the Catalan Alliance. A link that calls into question the data. Although it is true that there has been an increase in the number of immigrants among the incarcerated population, it is also true that the crime rate in Catalonia has not increased over the past century, while the number of foreigners has increased sevenfold since 2000.

Junts' discourse has evolved significantly in the past three years. “We have the highest immigration rate in the entire peninsula, 16.2%, two points higher than Madrid, and we do not have the skills or resources to manage it.” This phrase, which went unnoticed at the time, was said by Puigdemont in his speech last September in Brussels in which he set the conditions for the inauguration. A few days later, in parliament's policy debate, Gontz put to a vote a motion to demand devolution of immigration powers. The initiative was unsuccessful, but it laid the foundations for what would be one of Junts' new workforces.

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This position contradicts the position of the party itself in the last parliamentary elections in 2021, when it came to holding an election event at the gates of the Foreigners Detention Center (CIE), calling on the government to close it. In fact, it was one of the points of his election platform, a demand that also appears in the 2019 general elections, but this was not the case in the elections last July.

According to party sources, the change is due to the fact that the situation “is no longer the same as it was four years ago,” especially on the “security” level, ruling out that it has anything to do with the fear of forming an electoral list. The far right could overwhelm Sylvia Orioles in charge. “We are worried about zero,” they repeat several times from “Together.”

As well as mayors

The mayor of Calella, Marc Buch, was the first leader of the Junts to give a speech in favor of deporting returned migrants, but the application was signed by the rest of the mayors in Maresme and there was also agreement in other departments. It was then that Türul began giving his “Rights and Duties” speech regarding immigration. According to Gontz, much emphasis has recently been placed on the “rights” of foreigners, but not on their “duties”, which include their integration into the country and everything related to crime.

As Gontz's discourse developed, the ERC saw the possibility of identifying distances with post-convergence and trying to link them to the positions of extreme formations such as Alianca Catalana. They started subtly, but for several weeks now the accusation has been made openly. Republican leader Oriol Junqueras accused Gontz of embracing “extremist right-wing rhetoric that criminalizes immigrants.” He did not explicitly mention the opposing party, but he did not need to.

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The Republicans' goal is to draw an imaginary line between independence that links immigration to the issue of police and security, and another to issues of reception and integration. The left can confirm that its position has not been delayed. They say from Carrer di Calabria that the challenge is twofold: to confront a Junts team that is “following on the Orioles' heels” and at the same time to prevent Puigdemont's party from “defining their own path”. In other words, the current immigration debate does not define everything. However, the controversy is here to stay.

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