Josep Carod-Rovira, the leader of the Catalan Republican Left Party (ERC), upset the government once again last week, during his visit to Scotland. He told Scottish prime minister Alex Salmond: “Catalonia is like Scotland but Spain is not like England.” Both men are pushing for a referendum on their country’s independence from Spain and England – a move approved by the UK government but opposed by the Spanish government as unconstitutional. Since Sr Carod’s party came to prominence as a member of the so-called “tripartite” Catalan government, together with Catalan Socialist party and a smaller nationalist party, he has raised many hackles. Two of his worst gaffes were meeting leaders of the Basque terrorist group ETA in France to get them to agree not to carry out bomb attacks in Catalonia and upsetting the world’s Catholics during a visit to Israel, where the then Catalan regional president Pascual Maragall was photographed taking a photo of a broadly smiling Sr Carod holding a crown of thorns over his head outside a tourist souvenir stall in a Jerusalem street.
CATALAN LEADER UPSETS THE GOVERNMENT WITH COMMENT