Esquerra moves that Parliament demands Spain fulfils its duty to guarantee international protection

Esquerra calls for an end to the “systematic and arbitrary denial” of asylum for applicants at Spanish embassies and that the General State Budget provide for humanitarian corridors

The Esquerra group will vote in the next Catalan parliament session on a motion urging the Spanish government to guarantee international protection to all those who request it, and to cease the current “systematic and arbitrary denial” of asylum at Spanish embassies the world over.

The motion stems from an interpellation by Esquerra member of the Catalan parliament Ruben Wagensberg on the situation in Afghanistan and the role of the Catalan Generalitat government in the reception of refugees, and it specifically requires the Spanish state to comply with the provisions in article 38 of Spain’s Asylum Law 12/2009 and make effective the right to request international protection at Spanish embassies and consulates throughout the world. To do so, the regulations of this law should be enacted and legal certainty acknowledged for the mechanism provided to process applications for asylum outside the Spanish territory.

Esquerra also wants Spain to establish safe humanitarian corridors for those forcefully displaced and for the Spanish 2022 Government Budget to include the item that was already contemplated in the 2021 budget to establish these corridors, but which today has yet to be executed.

In another point, the Spanish government is called upon to recognize full capacity of reception by the Generalitat and to transfer to the Catalan administration “the corresponding resources, both state and European, as established by the competent courts and authorities,” as well as guaranteeing co-decision in the allocation of reception places in Catalonia.

Other requirements made of the Spanish executive are to make the current regulations more flexible in order to authorize residence and work permits for people applying for international protection, and to hasten family reunification processes and DNA tests that validate their family relationships.

“Continuing Catalonia’s vocation as an open society”

The motion also addresses the Generalitat government, urging it to “continue with Catalonia’s vocation as an open society, made up of migrations and continuous development.” Therefore, it asks the Catalan executive to “renew its offer to contribute to the establishment of a humanitarian corridor for the forcibly displaced, and that the subsequent reception process be inclusive, participatory and funded by the rest of institutional, social and civic actors in Catalonia.”

The motion likewise proposes that the Generalitat’s offices abroad act within the framework of their competences to “offer information to all those people who, seeing their human rights and integrity threatened, wish to make use of the mechanism established in article 38 of Law 12/2009 to apply for asylum at Spain’s embassies and consulates.”

Also regarding Catalonia, the motion calls upon the Generalitat to guarantee the implementation of programmes to learn Catalan as a language of cohesion; and the public administrations of Catalonia to establish mechanisms for dialogue with the Afghan community in Catalonia in order to accrue their expertise and knowledge when developing cooperation strategies for Afghanistan.