On behalf of the entire research sector, and the research centres of Catalonia in particular, we wish to express our concern following the Spanish Supreme Court’s decision regarding the sentences of the Catalan social and political leaders.
In our sector, proper scientific research is founded upon the sharing of ideas. In fact, all of the research centres, with all their diverse views and standpoints, have agreed to comply with the CERCA centres’ Code of Conduct, which lays out the minimum regulations governing the relations and coexistence of our institutions in Catalonia.
Freedom of thought, opposing ideas and the individuals who back them must not be persecuted, censored or punished. Our work requires, as does the rest of Catalan society, an unabating commitment to fundamental rights and mutual respect. In the same vein, a nonviolent social and political protest must be allowed with protesters if necessary facing legal and police responses of a proportionate nature.
In light of the trial and the sentences, we hereby voice, as we have before, our commitment to democracy, dialogue, nonviolence, respect for dissent within the law, and the freedom of expression and peaceful assembly. Only by respecting these principles may political intentions be resolved through proactive and participatory politics allowing the foundation of a progressive and internationally competitive environment.
Dr Lluís Rovira, director of the CERCA Institute
Dr Josep Samitier, president of the ACER society
Barcelona, 16th October 2019