Jailed Catalan activist asks for release following UN’s call on Spain

Jordi Cuixart requests to be freed after United Nations Group on Arbitrary Detention issues favorable report

Jailed pro-independence activist Jordi Cuixart (by Pere Francesch)
Jailed pro-independence activist Jordi Cuixart (by Pere Francesch) / ACN

ACN | Barcelona

May 29, 2019 05:05 PM

Jordi Cuixart, a Catalan activist imprisoned since October 2017, has asked to be released after the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention urged Spain to free him and two other pro-independence leaders from preventive prison.

The group's report, issued on Wednesday, asks for compensation for Cuixart, former vice president Oriol Junqueras, and activist turned politician Jordi Sànchez, and considers their detention to be a violation of fundamental rights, especially freedom of speech.

With nine Catalan politicians and activists imprisoned while on trial for their role in the 2017 independence bid, Cuixart, Sànchez and Junqueras were the first to take their cases to the United Nations in February 2018.

Former ministers Joaquim Forn, Josep Rull, Raül Romeva and Dolors Bassa, who are also behind bars, took their detentions to the same UN group in July 2018. The United Nations institution, dependent on the UN Human Rights Council, has so far only ruled on Sànchez, Cuixart and Junqueras.