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Opposition leader slams Torra for 'messing up' Mediterranean Games over king's presence

Inés Arrimadas says Catalan leader is "always looking for excuses for confrontation" while Tarragona mayor welcomes his final decision to attend event

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22 June 2018 03:47 PM

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ACN | Barcelona

Opposition leader Inés Arrimadas slammed the Catalan president Quim Torra on Friday for not leaving politics aside "not even for the inauguration of the Mediterranean Games." Following Torra's confirmation that he will finally attend the event despite the Spanish king's presence, the leader of unionist Ciutadans (Cs) said that the Catalan leader "is always looking for excuses for confrontation."

President Quim Torra was considering to avoid the king and not attend the inauguration because the monarch "has not apologized" for his speech after the Catalan referendum, when he did not condemn "police violence that caused over a thousand people to be injured". "Eight and a half months later, he has not even said a single word of support to jailed leaders or their families," Torra insisted. However, he said he would go to Tarragona for the inauguration Mediterranean Games because it was a big event for the country.

Arrimadas said that Torra "is always looking for excuses to mess things up". The leader of Cs added that the Catalan president will probably "play tricks" during the inauguration when he is expected to give to the king two reports about the situation on Catalan fundamental rights since October.

"The independence process is everywhere, even at the [Mediterranean] Games. That's a mistake, and shows a lack of political intelligence," Inés Arrimadas said to journalists when assessing Torra's attitude. According to the opposition leader, Torra "is the president of vetoes," because he has announced that he won't attend any event organized by the monarchy or invite the king to any Catalan executive events.

Mayor welcomes Torra "difficult" decision

Meanwhile, the mayor of Tarragona, Socialist Josep Fèlix Ballesteros, welcomed the Catalan president decision to finally attend the inauguration of the Games in the city. According to Ballesteros, the decision was "difficult to take" for the Catalan president because the current situation is "very complicated" politically, but it was the right one.

"I'm happy, thankful and satisfied," for the president presence at the inauguration, said the mayor, confirming that the Catalan government had "worked a lot" to make the Mediterranean Games a reality. For Ballesteros, not having the highest ranking Catalan official at the inauguration would have been an "anomaly."

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  • Inés Arrimadas speaks at the press conference room on June 7 2018 (by Núria Julià)

  • Inés Arrimadas speaks at the press conference room on June 7 2018 (by Núria Julià)