The President of Esquerra Republicana held a historical press conference from Soto del Real prison in which he once again demonstrated that he continues to defend each and every one of the objectives of the party, despite jail and repression
The President of Esquerra Republicana and a candidate to the Spanish Congreso, Oriol Junqueras began his press conference from Soto del Real prison, Madrid, where he has been incarcerated for more than one year and 5 months, by telling all the journalists he had before him in the video call that he missed them very much, and regretted not being able to hold more press conferences. He sent a message to his two children, who were following the conference from home: “Hello Lluc, hello, Joana!” This was the start of a historical press conference in which the President of Esquerra Republicana responded to the questions one by one, from over 80 journalists at the head office of the Catalan News Agency (ACN), and in which everyone could see that he stands as firm, passionate and strong as ever, despite being imprisoned.
Junqueras dissected his thoughts and the position of the Republicans regarding independence, the process towards the Catalan Republic, the defence of the referendum that he considers “inevitable,” and especially the post-electoral scenarios after the Spanish general elections. In this regard, the President of Esquerra and the lead Republican candidate said that they would never facilitate a far-right-wing government to rule in Spain, “like any democrat,” but at the same time they would not give their votes away to any party, and they would continue to defend each and every one of the objectives and conditions of the Republican Left, like the referendum, the Republic and social policies.
These are the 15 best quotes from the President of Esquerra Republicana, Oriol Junqueras, at the press conference from Soto del Real prison:
- As Republicans, we are convinced that the best route to achieve the goals of coexistence, progress, equal opportunities and justice is via the Catalan Republic.
- Every European democrat has the duty to prevent far-right governments. That does not mean that we will give away our votes to anyone. We will be demanding of every condition, action and decision that may be taken.
- If socialists PSOE can, they will cut a deal with right-wing liberals Ciudadanos. Independentism has a real chance of winning in the Spanish general elections in Catalonia for the first time. We are the best alternative.
- You’re asking someone who is in jail if we are ready to go the last mile. Obviously we will not give up on our democratic goals, nor our rights. Esquerra will always defend the interests of the citizens, even if that means that my colleagues and I have to do time or go into exile.
- Our will must be soaring and imposing if, as in my case, they want to give us 25-year sentences, and we continue defending exactly the same we have always defended!
- Our legitimate objective has been, is and will be the independence of Catalonia.
- Is there anyone, anywhere who would doubt the will of Catalan society if Esquerra wins these elections clearly? The victory of the Republican Left would be a very strong message of constance, perseverance, effort, hope, enthusiasm, of the will to build.
- If you see we have not desisted, that we have not tired, nor have we been cowed by imprisonment, then you will understand that we will never give up.
- We need everyone to vote on the 28th of April. If we win, we will be much closer to the inevitable referendum that must result in the Catalan Republic, and that is our goal.
- In Spain there are three people who own as much as 15 million. Do you think that is right, useful or fair? Redistribution is necessary to dedicate some of these resources to improving things like education and healthcare.
- If we are clear about our goal, we will be invincible. They used every resource they had in the gutters of the secret state to beat us, and if they couldn’t beat us, it was because we are invincible.
- Since we’ll never stop defending what we have always defended, even if imprisoned, the chances of victory are enormous. If we are able to build upon ever broader projects, we will win. Have no doubt that we will win.
- [To President Puigdemont] A hearty, fraternal embrace from your brother-in-arms. I am still resolved to go on working in continued mutual understanding.
- Esquerra Republicana is a party with 88 years of republican, independentist history, of commitment to social justice. 88 years of history and not a single case of corruption. We feel legitimately proud.
- I ask that you give your all, do your very best to make these the best results ever, because we have a better future to build. We have many challenges to face, and we need every tool to meet them. That is why we want the Republic.