Moscow, accused of supporting separatism of Catalonia, considers an illegal referendum on independence autonomy from Spain
The situation is scheduled for October 1 referendum on the independence of Catalonia should develop strictly in accordance with Spanish law, said the representative of the Russian foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova.
“We believe the situation in Catalonia is an internal affair of Spain. We believe that the development of events in the Catalan of the plot should be strictly in line with current Spanish legislation,” she said at the briefing held the day before. Zakharova recalled that Moscow in its relations with the Madrid comes from “unconditional respect for the sovereignty and territorial
integrity” of Spain.
“The so-called referendum on independence, as well as other unilateral initiatives of local legislators, are perceived in the context of its own on these matters the decisions of the constitutional court of Spain,” added she, thereby giving to understand that the Russian foreign Ministry officially believes that the referendum on independence illegal.
We will remind, the constitutional court of Spain on 8 September 2017 suspended adopted by the Parliament of Catalonia law on referendum 1 October, which made only one question: “do you Want Catalonia was an independent state in the form of Republic?” And earlier the constitutional court of Spain declared illegal a resolution of the Parliament of Catalonia on the establishment of an independent Republic. According to the resolution by the end of 2017 is to be formed government structures, and composed the text of the new Constitution of Catalonia. The Spanish government does not intend to recognize the referendum results.
Spain Russia culpable in supporting separatism of Catalonia
In Catalonia there was an unprecedented situation, partly because, apparently, there is a lot of support from the outside, is quoted by the Spanish press edition InoPressa.
Popular suspicion, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is the figurehead of Russia, which in the framework of its campaign to destabilize Western democracies supports the movements of the secessionists from Scotland to Texas (secession – secession from the state any part (from lat. secessio – care) – approx. ed.).
Wealthy Russians, including the alleged leaders of the mafia, which is rumored to be linked with the Kremlin, they love to vacation and purchase second homes in Barcelona and the surrounding resort towns on the Costa Brava. Some of these persons, the Spanish authorities have brought criminal charges that may disappear if the control will be transferred to the new national government of Catalonia, which is friendly attitude to Russia, suggests the author of the article in Yahoo! News.
Anyone who was watching this topic on the account of WikiLeaks on Twitter, can you imagine what the streets of Barcelona touring the tanks and the civil war began. Assange publishes “provocative” record, using photographs from the archives. Such dramatic message and resulted in the assumption of the press that Assange is actually a figurehead of Russia.
On the other hand, the Parliament of Catalonia and head of government autonomy Carles Putteman a few weeks ago, has hired lobbyists in Washington to promote U.S. ideas of the legality of the separation of Catalonia from Spain. “The biggest success they had with a member of the house of representatives, This Republican Rohrabacher, who is known as “Putin’s favorite Congressman”, and recently met with Assange at his refuge in the Embassy in London. Rohrabacher voted in support of the right of Catalonia to self-determination, although his words do not reflect the official position of the United States. Since Spain is one of the closest allies of the US and a NATO member, campaign Catalan separatists unpopular in the international community,” writes the author of the article, arguing that Russia’s interest in Catalonia is clear.
According to the experts cited in the Spanish press, the Russian instruments of propaganda are actively trying to influence the situation in Catalonia.
Mechanisms of spreading false news that Russia uses to weaken US and EU, have earned and in Catalonia, writes El Pais, drawing conclusions from “a detailed analysis of the Pro-Russian websites and profiles in social networks, conducted by digital analysts”.
The Kremlin has considered that the independence movement of Catalonia gives another chance to stir discord in Europe and to strengthen its influence in the international arena, it uses the websites that publish the “ducks”, as well as activists like Julian Assange and a Legion of bots (millions of robotic accounts in social networks, which are able to transform a lie into a trend that is replicated millions of times).
As writes the edition, the company RT, funded by the Russian government for propaganda in favor of the Kremlin uses its Spanish-language Internet portal for dissemination of news on the Catalonian crisis, which are biased, contrary to constitutional legality. From August 28 to 42 RT published the news about the crisis in Catalonia, and a few with incorrect headers.
The newspaper also believes that Assange “in fact, became the main instigator of the Catalan international crisis, spreading opinions and half-truths like it’s news.” According to the platform Audiense, this month, Assange was mentioned on Twitter almost 940 thousand times, and for the most part with hatagami associated with the movement for the independence of Catalonia.
Assessment tool NewsWhip, “the most influential in the world tweet” about measures of the Spanish authorities aimed to disrupt the referendum, was the publication of Assange on 15 September: “Ask the world to support the right of Catalonia to self-determination. We can not allow Spain erected in the norm repressive steps to prevent a vote.”
Last week the campaign was joined by Assange Edward Snowden, who, according to the newspaper, regularly cooperates with the Russian special services. 21 September at 17:05 he wrote on Twitter: “the Fact that Spain suppresses inconvenient statements, policies and demonstrations in Catalonia, is a violation of human rights”.
Assange also posted a link to the article Director of the website AntiWar Justin Raimondo, whom the newspaper calls “faithful ally of the Russian position in the United States.” In an article titled “Catalonia: Spanish Tiananmen square?” compared the protests in Barcelona and demonstrations, which the Chinese regime has suppressed in 1989. Then anonymous profiles on Twitter with thousands of followers and are typically dedicated to the promotion of Russian propaganda, held the same parallel between Barcelona and Tiananmen.
The decisive proof that the movement of the fighters for independence in Spain attracted the attention of persons mobilizing the Pro-Russian army of bots, the fact that a few days ago to the topics that they usually mention in social media (Syria, Russia, Ukraine, trump, Hillary Clinton, ISIS*), added “Catalonia”, writes the author, referring to the Hamilton tool 68, which is used by Securing Alliance for Democracy (German Marshall Fund project). “This tool constantly analyzes accounts 600 – robotic and other – being “in orbit” of the Kremlin,” writes El Pais.
“The digital army of the Kremlin operate on the same pattern: provide viral popularity exaggerated or false messages or news to escalate the crisis and to sow discord in the US and Europe, which ultimately is beneficial to Moscow’s position. Because of that, these “guerrillas” use sites, disguised as a serious newspaper; they create or post such news which later spread” – says the Spanish newspaper, noting that “in official statements by the Kremlin says that the crisis over Catalan independence movement – a matter located solely within the competence of Spain.”
Another Spanish newspaper La Vanguardia, citing data from the Alliance for Securing Democracy, writes that this is the same “Twitter-bots”, which “affected campaign “Brekzita” in the UK and the campaign in the United States, in which the elections were won by the trump.”
“Accounts, which analyzes the Alliance, from “official channels, the Russian media such as RT, Ruptly, or Sputnik, to the personal accounts, for example, Assange, activists or members of the Russian government, recently they have started to cover the referendum on 1 October, with the peak of messages about the political situation in Catalonia occurred on 20-21 September, after the arrest of 15 senior officials of the Catalan government,” the article says.
Catalonia took part in the Moscow conference of the separatists
The last two years, Catalonia has sent a delegate to Moscow for the international conference of the separatists – a forum that holds the “anti-Globalization movement of Russia”, supported by the Kremlin.
Attending the press Secretary of the party “Catalan solidarity for independence” Jose Enrique Folk promised that, if Catalonia becomes independent, it recognizes the Russian annexation of Crimea, will not support sanctions imposed on Moscow, and will do everything in order to establish strong ties with Russia in the spheres of economy, culture and social welfare.
Among foreign politicians, the desire for independence of Catalonia supported, apparently, only the Prime Minister of Hungary Orban and the President-dictator of Venezuela, Maduro, both close to Putin, said in the article.
However, on the eve of the referendum, Jose Enrique Folk are not so clearly articulates their promises, saying that the position of his party on the issues of Crimea and sanctions will depend on if Russia recognizes the independence of Catalonia.