The President of the European Parliament, Antonio Tajani, has ordered that Spanish language be included in all the public signage and corporate image of the European Parliament Information Office in Barcelona. Tajani announced this measure following a complaint by the Spanish Euro MP Enrique Calvet who, in a letter sent at the end of October, denounced "the exclusive presence" of Catalan in the "corporate communication" of the European Parliament Information Office in Barcelona.
La Plataforma per la Llengua has sent the president of the European Parliament a letter to inform him that Spanish is also used in the Office, both in the corporate image and communications, as can be verified on the Office's website.
La Plataforma per la Llengua has reminded Mr. Tajani that if he is truly concerned about language rights, then at this moment in time there are serious deficits preventing all the language groups in Catalonia from enjoying equal rights. We have therefore called upon the President of the European Parliament to implement a series of measures to foster the presence of Catalan in the European Parliament and in the EU institutions.
First of all, we petition the European Parliament to include Occitan - an official language in Catalonia - in the corporate image and the public communications of the European Parliament Information Office in Barcelona; we likewise consider that it is only fair that Catalan, Basque and Galician also be included in the European Parliament's Office in Madrid, as they also represent the State as a whole.
Moreover, we are calling for the possibility to use Catalan language in the European Parliament (Brussels and Strasbourg), as well as for other measures, such as the translation of the Union's treaties and basic documents or the inclusion of Catalan in the language-learning programmes promoted by the European Commission. It was precisely the European Parliament that called for these provisions, in 1990, following a resolution proposed by the Euro MP and former member of the European Commission, Vivian Reding. In this regard, we would remind Mr. Tajani that the language policy hitherto applied by the European Parliament Information Office in Barcelona has observed the provisions of the aforementioned resolution, which was approved by the institution presided by Mr. Tajani.
Furthermore, our NGO also wishes to state that the only way to guarantee the full linguistic rights of Catalan in Europe is to make it an official EU language, and that the measures we are proposing would be merely a temporary solution until this status is obtained. Since such official status can only be achieved through a petition by the Spanish State in the European Council, we would urge Mr. Tajani to call upon the Spanish government to initiate this formality.
With these petitions, La Plataforma per la Llengua would like to request a meeting with the President of the European Parliament in order to bring about true linguistic equality and the recognition of Catalan as an official language of the European institutions.