Referendum indictments another 'infringement of civil rights,' says Torra

President condemns decision to prosecute 30 individuals over 2017 independence vote, while unionist opposition calls his show of support "shameful"

Quim Torra addresses the new indictments over referendum logistics
Quim Torra addresses the new indictments over referendum logistics / ACN

ACN | Barcelona

April 9, 2019 07:54 PM

A Barcelona court's decision on Tuesday to indict 30 individuals for a range of offenses, including misuse of public funds and disobedience, in relation to the 2017 independence bid drew plenty of comment from Catalonia's political parties.

President Quim Torra gave a statement to the press in which he called the indictments "another step forward in the infringement of civil rights," and expressed the "determination" of the government and the independence movement to continue working for a republic.

Pledging that the government and the independence movement will continue with its "commitment to freedom," Torra added that "there are not enough prisons, fines, exiles or persecution that can halt the Catalan people's desire for liberty."

Court's decision "politically motivated," says VP

The Catalan vice president Pere Aragonès called the court's decision "politically motivated," accusing the Spanish authorities of wanting to "penalize the independence movement" and making 30 people pay because they cannot "go after two million people."

As for the president at the time of the 2017 independence bid, Carles Puigdemont, he said from exile in Brussels that the 30 indicted individuals did their jobs "loyally, honestly and rigorously," adding that there is "not any" evidence that justifies their prosecution.

CUP accuses court of "lack of transparency"

Meanwhile, the pro-independence far-left CUP party accused the court of acting with a "lack of transparency," with MP Maria Sirvent describing the case as "political" and motivated by a desire for "punishment and vengeance."

The left-wing CatECP party, which remains unaligned on the independence issue, called the court's decision worrying, with party spokeswoman Susana Segovia calling for an investigation into the neutrality of the judiciary and the "criminalization" of protest.

Cs slams Torra's support for "participants in a coup"

The unionist Cs party said it was "shameful" that Torra should use a government press appearance to support "participants in a coup." Spokesman Carlos Carrizosa also said the inclusion of the heads of Catalan public TV and radio among the indicted showed that TV3 and Catalunya Ràdio were "necessary collaborators" in the "coup against democracy."