Spain to transfer jailed pro-independence leaders to Catalonia this week
Relocation already approved for six out of nine politicians imprisoned in Madrid
The Spanish government has started the process of transferring six of nine pro-independence leaders jailed in Madrid to prisons in Catalonia, following their requests to be held in penitentiaries closer to home. The relocation from Madrid to Catalonia could take place between Tuesday and Wednesday.
The leaders being transferred include former Parliament speaker Carme Forcadell, in prison since March 23 for her role in the independence bid, as well as former vice president Oriol Junqueras and ex-ministers Dolors Bassa and Raül Romeva. Jordi Cuixart and Jordi Sánchez, two activists jailed since October 16, will also be moved to prisons in Catalonia.
Forcadell and Bassa will first be transferred to a prison in Figueres, near Girona, while Cuixart, Sànchez, Romeva and Junqueras will arrive in the Lledoners prison, in the Catalan town of Sant Joan de Vilatorrada. The leaders will subsequently be moved to the prisons where they chose to stay.
In total, there are nine pro-independence leaders jailed in the Madrid region, all of whom face criminal charges of rebellion for their role in the political roadmap that led to a referendum and a declaration of independence last October, which were deemed illegal by Spain.
It is yet to be announced whether the Supreme Court judge Pablo Llarena, who is in charge of the case against the independence leaders, will also authorize the transfer of former ministers Joaquim Forn, Josep Rull and Jordi Turull.
While the process to transfer the leaders started on Monday, it will not be completed until Wednesday or Thursday, when the politicians are expected to arrive in the Catalan prisons to which they requested they be moved.
Bassa asked to be transferred to the women’s prison in Girona, Sànchez will be transferred to the Quatre Camins prison, Romeva asked to be moved to a Barcelona prison, while Cuixart and Junqueras will be transferred to the Brians II penitentiary.