Barcelona has a long history of defending human rights. Today, we honor this historic political and, above all, social legacy of the city, which has worked and continues to do so today, tirelessly for the respect of human rights and peace worldwide. And it marks the way forward for many other municipalities and public institutions.
In 1998, the 1st European Conference of Cities for Human Rights was held in Barcelona, in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and which initiated the path that culminated two years later in the adoption of the European Charter for the Safeguarding of Human Rights of the City. This event was one example, among many, of Barcelona's commitment to be a city that promotes the defense of Human Rights and to become a world reference in this field.
Years before, Barcelona, with the international projection it had after the Olympic period, was also a clear example of solidarity during the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina, when citizens and institutions unanimously launched a multitude of solidarity and cooperation projects, accompanied by a clear denunciation of the crimes and violations of rights that were being committed.
We cannot forget multiple outstanding citizen experiences in defense of Human Rights and the construction of Peace throughout the last decades. It is worth mentioning the outcry against war that arose from the massive mobilizations against NATO, or years later, and in historic proportions worldwide, those against the Iraq War.
Barcelona will now also be remembered in history as the first major city council to break ties with apartheid in solidarity with the Palestinian people. This reminds us of the courageous city councils that were pioneers in cutting ties with apartheid South Africa in the past.
This decision goes beyond Barcelona. It is a clear response to the struggle of Catalan civil society, social movements, trade unions and political parties around the world fighting for the rights of all.
We, the signatories of this letter, oppose racism in all its forms and defend the principles of justice and human rights in a comprehensive manner. We are outraged that government responses to Israel's grave violations of the rights of the Palestinian people under international law are limited to empty expressions of "concern" while many of these governments arm, fund and support Israel's system of injustice.
This decision in Barcelona is a landmark event that will hopefully spur many other administrations to stop collaborating with a regime that has murdered more than 50 children in 2022 alone and more than 2,000 since 2000. The Palestinian people are asking us to stop being complicit with Israeli apartheid.
We cannot forget that with the current Israeli government, the most extreme right-wing, racist, sexist and homophobic in the history of the country, accountability is more necessary than ever to end its impunity and force it to respect the rights of the Palestinian people.
We thank all those who have made this decision possible and the women human rights defenders who have worked tirelessly and selflessly to achieve it. You give us hope that justice, freedom, equality and dignity for all can and will prevail. Finally, we reiterate our hope that this decision will inspire institutions around the world to end their own involvement in sustaining oppressive regimes.
Long live free Palestine!
Paco Ibañez , singer. Jaume Roures , founder of Publico and audiovisual producer. Maruja Torres Manzanera , writer and journalist. Helena Maleno , Human Rights Defender, Spanish-Moroccan journalist, writer and researcher. Yayo Herrero, Anthropologist and ecofeminist and Human Rights activist. Luisa Morgantini former vice-president of the European Parliament. José María González Santos " Kichi ", mayor of Cadiz. Teresa Rodriguez , spokesperson for Adelante Andalucía. Boaventura de Sousa Santos , professor at the University of Coimbra.Carles Riera , Member of Parliament. Eulàlia Reguant , Parliamentarian. Adelina Escandell , Senator for ERC-Sobirianistes. Manuel Zaguirre , Former Secretary General of USO. KAP ( Jaume Capdevila ), cartoonist of La Vanguardia and "el Jueves". Samantha Hudson , artist. Joan Roura Villalmanzo , TV3 journalist. Sílvia Heras , TV3 journalist. Moha Gerehou , journalist and anti-racist activist. Moni Ovadia , theater director and writer. Brigitte Vasallo, writer Clara Serra , philosopher and feminist. Benet Salellas , lawyer. Laia Serra Perelló , lawyer. Alberto San Juan , actor. Clara Segura Crespo, actress. Julio Manrique , actor and director. Los chicos del Maíz , music group. Santiago Alba Rico , essayist. David Fernandez , journalist. Gabriela Serra , social activist. Isaac Rosa , writer. Fermin Muguruza , musician and filmmaker. Pastor Filigrana Garcia , lawyer.Juan Soroeta Liceras , Professor of Public International Law at the University of the Basque Country. Marta Sanz Pastor , writer. Salvador López Arnar , collaborator of El Viejo Topo. José Luis Martín Ramos , Emeritus Professor of Contemporary History. Alguer Miquel Bo , musician. Bruna Cusi Echaniz, actress. Ana Tijoux , singer. Teresa Aranguren Amezola , journalist. Ieguer Presas Renom , ex-football player of FC Barcelona. Jordi Calvo, Coordinator of the Delàs Center for Peace Studies. Montserrat Vila, member of Hèlia. Nora Miralles, President of the Delàs Center for Peace Studies. Yago Alvarez , journalist. Andrés Garcia , lawyer. Anaïs Franquesa , lawyer. Youssef M. Ouled , journalist. Arés Perceval , co-president of LaFede.cat. Albert Caramés Boada , director of Fundipau. Montserrat Arbós , journalist, professor at the Faculty of Communication and International Relations Blanquerna, member of Fundipau. Toni Guirao , president of the ACAPS Federation. Luca Gervasoni Vila , director of the NOVACT Institute of Nonviolence. Pere Ortega , researcher in the culture of peace. Diego Checa Hidalgo, professor and researcher at the University of Granada. Miriam Hatibi , communication consultant. Sarah Babiker Moreno, journalist. Pepe Beúnza , Spain's first conscientious objector for non-religious reasons. Maysun Abu-Khdeir, photojournalist. Héctor Grad Fuchsel , university professor at the UAM. Anita Botwin , journalist and feminist activist. Tribade , music group. Rosa de Falastín Mustafá , deputy of the PSPV-PSOE in the Valencian Courts. Isaías Barreñada Bajo, professor of International Relations at the Complutense University of Madrid. Alejandro Pozo, researcher on armed conflicts at the Delàs Center and professor of International Relations. Ramon Pedregal Casanova , writer. Anna Gabriel , jurist. Neus Sotomayor , President of Unipau. Yacine Belahcene Benet , singer, producer and cultural manager. Maider Fernández Iriarte – Director (in Lo de Évole and documentaries). Agustín Velloso Santisteban , UNED professor. José Abu-Tarbush , professor at the University of Laguna. Dina Bousselham , political scientist and UCLM professor. Waleed Saleh , university professor at the UAM. Jaime Pastor Verdú, political science professor at UNED. Jorge Ramos Tolosa , professor at the University of Valencia. Marga Olalla Marfil , member of Lluita Internationalista. Mª Rosalía Moro López , journalist. Pedro López López, Professor Complutense University of Madrid. Sira Rego , MEP and federal spokesperson for Izquierda Unida. Enrique Santiago , General Secretary of the PCE and deputy of Unidas Podemos. Àngela Ballester Muñoz , former member of the Congress of Deputies of Podemos. Ernest Urtasun , MEP of En Comú Podemos and vice-president of the Greens/ALE. Miguel Urbán , Member of the European Parliament of Anticapitalists. Manuel Pineda, MEP of Unidas Podemos. Jaume Asens , deputy of Unidas Podemos. Lucía Muñoz Dalda , deputy of Unidas Podemos. Antón Gomez – Reino , deputy of the Congress of Unidas Podemos.