The Catalunya Conundrum, Part 2: A Full-Blown Constitutional Crisis for Spain

In Part 1, we have explained the rigidity of the constitutional doctrine of our Constitutional Court on the matter of regional independence movements. There are some evident conclusions that swiftly appear – most of all that the only legal  way for a hypothetical majority of Catalan citizens to express their wish to secede or at least to consult with the population on the issue, would presuppose a constitutional reform. This is a tremendously complicated matter in itself, though.

Continue Reading →

Fighting Judicial Corruption with Constitutional Measures: the Albanian Case

No state can thrive with corrupt political and legal elites. But if lawmakers and judges are corrupt themselves, fighting corruption with legal means is all but impossible. As a step towards membership in the European Union, Albania has embedded a comprehensive reform of its anti-corruption law directly into its constitution.

Continue Reading →

Maßnahmen gegen den Terror: Frankreich nach den Anschlägen in Paris

Anfang letzter Woche hat der französische Präsident François Hollande vor dem versammelten Parlament seine Antwort auf die Anschläge in Paris formuliert. Einerseits soll der verhängte Ausnahmezustand um drei Monate verlängert und maßgeblich verschärft werden. Das Parlament hat ein entsprechendes Gesetz bereits angenommen. Andererseits beabsichtigt Hollande die Verfassung zu ändern, um einer „neuen Art von Krieg“ gerecht werden zu können. Ziel sei es, ein „régime civil d’état de crise“ zu schaffen, welches die nationale Sicherheit garantieren könne, ohne darüber hinaus die libertés publiques unnötig einschränken zu müssen. Was hat Frankreich genau vor, und was steht verfassungsrechtlich auf dem Spiel?

Continue Reading →

“The key to the solution lies in Spain, not in Catalonia”

Why did the territorial conflict between separatist Catalonia and the Spanish central government escalate so badly? What is at stake in a country historically ridden by civil war and separatist terrorism? What needs to be done to resolve the conflict, and by whom? In an interview with Verfassungsblog, Benito Aláez Corral, constitutional law professor from Oviedo, explains how the Spanish constitution needs to be amended to satisfy the demand for national self-determination in Catalonia and maintain the constitutional integrity of Spain.

Continue Reading →