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High court considers allegations that Catalan authorities 'unjustifiably' blocked opening of field hospital

President and health minister accused of "reckless homicide" in denying permission to open facility set up by Spanish police and army

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15 April 2020 07:48 PM

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ACN|Barcelona

Spain's High Court of Justice of Catalonia, the TSJC, is deciding whether to investigate claims that the Catalan president, Quim Torra, and health minister, Alba Vergés, blocked the opening of a temporary hospital in Sant Andreu de la Barca, near Barcelona.

Torra and Vergés could face charges of reckless homicide if the high court decides to pursue the investigation opened by a judge in the city of Martorell into whether the Catalan officials unlawfully refused to allow the field hospital to open.

The claim from an individual and based on a media report and a Twitter account accuses the Catalan authorities of "unjustifiably" denying the hospital permission to open because it was set up by Spanish police and an emergency unit of Spain's armed forces.

On Wednesday, Vergés dismissed the allegation, saying "there is no place for it, and less so in the management of a crisis," and the minister insisted that the temporary hospital has not been opened because "it is not thought to be necessary."

The Spanish armed forces also came up in the foreign affairs parliamentary committee today, when MP for the unionist Ciudadanos party, Susana Beltrán, defended the presence of troops during the crisis and said they "promote social cohesion and peace."

 

 

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  • Spanish Guardia Civil officers setting up beds at a sports center in Sant Andreu de la Barca (Courtesy of Sant Andreu de la Barca council)

  • Spanish Guardia Civil officers setting up beds at a sports center in Sant Andreu de la Barca (Courtesy of Sant Andreu de la Barca council)

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