Opposition questions Torra over alleged role in plot to occupy parliament

A pro-independence activist charged with terrorism told of week-long occupation plot on verdict day and suggests Torra may have been involved

Catalan president Quim Torra on October 31, 2019 (by Sílvia Jardí)
Catalan president Quim Torra on October 31, 2019 (by Sílvia Jardí) / Oliver Little

Oliver Little | Barcelona

November 7, 2019 04:30 PM

Opposition parties have questioned president of the Catalan government Quim Torra over recent allegations that there was a plot for him to be locked inside Catalan parliament on the day that the verdict of the jailed independence leaders was released.

A pro-independence activist and member of the Committees in Defense of the Republic protest group, arrested and charged with terrorism in September by Spanish police, revealed the plan and testified that it could have been plotted by president Torra himself. 

Torra has since spoken out on the matter, denying any ''link'' to the CDR activists. 

Álvarez de Toledo urges judiciary to accuse Torra

In a press conference at the Catalan News Agency (ACN), candidate for the People's Party in Catalonia, Cayetana Álvarez de Toledo, has urged for the General Prosecutor and judge to call Torra to ''declare himself accused'' of the allegations. 

She seeks action from the judiciary, saying that it ''the prosecutor's office and judges should call him to declare and ask if it is true,'' adding that it is ''most likely that Torra will end up accused.''

Asens stresses that citizens deserve Torra explanation

Jaume Asens, candidate of En Comú Podem, has said that Torra needs to address the allegations by appearing in parliament and address the allegations. He has so far only done so in a press release. 

''Citizens deserve the president to appear and say if the information is true,'' he demanded, reminding repeated calls for his resignation in the past. 

However, he also urged for ''caution'' when assessing the allegations because they are in their initial phase. He said that assessments are ''premature,'' and has demanded that the presumption of innocence of those investigated be guaranteed.

Iceta perplexed by Torra’s initial silence

Although Torra has now spoken on the matter Miquel Iceta, first secretary of the Catalan Socialist Party, questioned why it was taking Torra so long to dismiss or take responsibility for the allegations.

He feels that Torra's initially silence increases suspicions over his involvement - ''it cannot be that someone connects you to condemning activities, true or false, and you do not raise your finger to say that it is not true or that it is true and you are responsible,'' exclaimed Iceta. 

''If you are the president, you must act like the president,'' he said during the presentation of his manifesto, ''Now the Senate. Now dialogue'' as part of the Catalan Socialist Party's campaign for the upcoming general election on November 10.