Exiled Catalan leader gets Swiss residence permit for five years

Former CUP MP Anna Gabriel to start a PhD at the University of Geneva

Former CUP MP Anna Gabriel (by ACN)
Former CUP MP Anna Gabriel (by ACN) / ACN

ACN | Barcelona

June 29, 2018 12:50 PM

Anna Gabriel, a pro-independence leader seeking refuge in Switzerland to avoid prosecution in Spain, has been granted a five-year residence permit that will allow her to work in the country and apply for public positions, according to Gabriel’s mother, Maribel Sabaté. Speaking to a local radio station in Catalonia, Sabaté said her daughter will soon start a PhD at the University of Geneva.

Last February, Gabriel ignored a summons from the Supreme Court and traveled to Switzerland arguing she would not face a fair trial in Spain. In total, there are nine pro-independence leaders jailed in Madrid, while seven left Catalonia to seek refuge in other European countries.

A former leader of the far-left CUP party, Gabriel was a highly influential figure in the pro-independence movement, but held no government responsibilities. While former ministers and other officials will face trial for rebellion, Gabriel was charged with the lesser offence of disobedience.