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EU court annuls decision preventing Puigdemont from becoming MEP

Exiled former president and former minister Comín enter European Parliament to go through paperwork for taking up their seats

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20 December 2019 11:23 AM

by

ACN | Barcelona

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) has annulled the decision by the EU's General Court preventing exiled Catalan pro-independence leaders Carles Puigdemont and Toni Comín from taking up their seats as MEPs in the European Parliament's opening session in July.

Friday's ruling sides with the Catalan politicians, who appealed the decision taken by the General Court judges in July, and says that at the time the court "made a mistake."

The EU's top court referred the matter back to the General Court to be "reexamined."

This comes a day after the ECJ confirmed the immunity of Oriol Junqueras, who like Puigdemont and Comín, was elected a Member of the European Parliament in the May election, but who was in preventive detention in Spain and not allowed to take up his seat.

This means the judges think Junqueras should have been able to become an MEP on winning his seat, opening the door for Puigdemont and Comín – not serving prison sentences and not barred from office, as they went into exile – to take up their seats.

Both exiled former cabinet members entered the EU chamber premises on Friday shortly before noon, after its head lifted a ban on both Puigdemont and Comín to get in the chamber. 

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  • Image of Catalan former president, Carles Puigdemont, in a press conference on December 19, 2019 (by Alan Ruiz Terol)

  • Image of Catalan former president, Carles Puigdemont, in a press conference on December 19, 2019 (by Alan Ruiz Terol)

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