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‘Fictitious narrative’ from Spain on rebellion has collapsed, says Catalan president

Madrid "hopes" Spanish judiciary can "do its work with all the accused," while unionist Cs warns "the ones who fled can benefit" from European arrest warrants


12 July 2018 02:40 PM


ACN | Barcelona

Catalan President Quim Torra said Germany's decision regards his predecessor Carles Puigdemont shows that the "fictitious narrative" from Spain has collapsed.

The high court in Schleswig-Holstein ruled that the Catalan former head be extradited but only for misuse of public funds and not rebellion, as Spain's judiciary was seeking.

In fact, 13 Catalan pro-independence officials, including Puigdemont, are charged with rebellion in Spain.

Torra said that the Spanish state has tried to shape this narrative “any which way,” which he brands as false. After visiting the leaders in pre-trial jail in central Catalonia, Torra demanded freedom for these politicians "now more than ever." "It is an injustice and an indecency that they remain in prison one minute more," he added. 

The Spanish government does not comment

The Spanish government published a first assessment of the situation. Sources close to the Spanish president revealed that the executive had “no comment on the decisions of the Spanish court s or on those of the German justice,” but added that “the government hopes that justice can do its work with all those accused.”

Spanish president Pedro Sánchez also avoided making any comment regards the German court decision. Indeed, he stated that “judicial decisions are not to be evaluated, they are to be respected.” Sánchez also reiterated that Spain is a social and democratic state.

Cs: 'Those who fled hold a benefit'

The leader of unionist Ciutadans (Cs), Albert Rivera, welcomed the German court’s decision as “good because it means that there are alleged crimes and although [Puigdemont] fled, he’ll still have to pay for what he did.” However, Rivera lamented that “those who show their face will be judged” while “those who fled hold a benefit before justice.” 

PP: Suspension of Schengen Agreement

Meanwhile, the People’s Party demanded in the European Parliament that the Spanish president “suspend” the application of the Schengen Agreement in Spain until “it is clarified” that the European arrest warrant system “serves any purpose.”

PSC respects decisions

The Catalan Socialist party (PSC) has avoided commenting on the decision regarding Carles Puigdemont’s extradition. The spokesperson for the party simply expressed that the group “respects all decisions made by judges in Spain, Germany, and everywhere else.”

CatECP: Rebellion charges 'no longer hold up'

Spokesperson for the in-between-blocs Catalunya en Comú-Podem (CatECP) party Elisenda Alamany has asked Spain’s prosecutor to “withdraw” the charges of rebellion against pro-independence politicians because they “no longer hold up.” Alamany further emphasized that the judicialization of politics “brings no solution.”

ERC: 'New blow to Spain's judiciary'

Spokesperson for the pro-independence Esquerra Republicana party (ERC), Sergi Sabrià, considers the ruling regards Puigdemont’s extradition to be “a new blow by the German judiciary” to the Spanish Supreme Court judge Pablo Llarena , who is overseeing the case. “The narrative invented by the Spanish justice starts to unravel: there’s no rebellion because there was never any violence,” said Sabrià.

CUP: 'Political trial'

An MP for the far-left pro-independence CUP party, Natàlia Sànchez, expressed that the German court’s decision demonstrates that “there is a political and judicial trial against the [Catalan] republican movement and against pro-independence leaders.”

Jordi Sànchez, jailed for his role as a grassroots leader in the run up to the independence referendum, and currently president of Torra’s Junts per Catalunya (JxCat) platform, reacted via twitter. He celebrated that “the German judiciary put an end to the madness of [the charges of] rebellion.” He further wrote: “President Puigdemont is free! We, by order of [judge] Llarena, are in prison and suspended as MPs. Spain is different.”