Row over plan to force migrants to learn Catalan

24th August 2006, Comments 0 comments

24 August 2006, MADRID — The government has criticised moves by political parties in Catalonia to allow migrants to vote only if they learn Catalan, it was reported on Thursday.

24 August 2006

MADRID — The government has criticised moves by political parties in Catalonia to allow migrants to vote only if they learn Catalan, it was reported on Thursday.

Madrid and the ruling socialist party have condemned plans by the Convergence and Union (CiU) party among other parties in the northeast region to force legal migrants to learn the language in order to be able to vote in local elections.

It comes after the Spanish government said it planned to allow all legal migrants, not just those from European Union countries, the right to vote in local elections from next year.

The move will be conditional on similar agreements with the immigrants' countries.

Earlier this week, the CiU and other Catalan regional parties said they were in favour of making knowledge of Catalan a condition of suffrage.

Government sources told El Pais newspaper: "It is unacceptable to discriminate".

In other parts of Spain, some British, French, German and Dutch expats have become involved in local politics, joining Spanish parties.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

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