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‘If the price of defending self-determination is my personal liberty, I’ll pay it,’ says Torra

The Catalan president denounced that prosecuted pro-independence leaders are being seen as “guilty of being democrats” while speaking in Brussels with Puigdemont


18 February 2019 09:43 PM


ACN | Brussels

“If the price of defending our freedom, the price of defending the rights of our people, and the price of defending the price of self-determination is my personal liberty,” pledged the Catalan president Quim Torra at a speech, alongside Carles Puigdemont, “I will pay the price.”

“An attack on democracy, on human rights,” says Torra

In his speech in Brussels on the trial being held in Madrid and on the European Union, the head of the Catalan executive further denounced that the prosecuted leaders are “guilty of being democrats” but are “being accused as if they were criminals,” which he categorized as “an attack on democracy, on human rights.”

He deemed this “improper to the Europe of the 21st century.”  “The European Unuon should be a bastion of freedom,” he expressed, adding: “We are pro-European, we are democrats, and we will not stand idly while others bring down this project and violate the rights of European citizens.”

A banned talk, vetoed security

In his talk, the Catalan president also denounced the president of the European Parliament Antonio Tajani in banning his and his predecessor Carles Puigdemont’s speech at the institution due to “security threats,” which saw the event instead being held at a hotel.

On the trip, Torra and Puigdemont met with the Flemish president and chamber speaker on Tuesday. On the same day, Spain vetoed the Catalan police from accompanying the official as armed security as they usually do. The home affairs minister Miquel Buch said that they “did not understand” this change in criteria. 


  • Catalan president Quim Torra speaks at a hotel in Brussels on February 19 2019 (by Blanca Blay)

  • Catalan president Quim Torra speaks at a hotel in Brussels on February 19 2019 (by Blanca Blay)