Catalan separatist leader Carles Puigdemont’s appeal against arrest warrants issued against him rejected, even though the formation of a new government depends on itsparked a controversy in Spain.
The judgment of the Constitutional Court (the biggest judicial institution in the country) comes at a time when the outgoing Socialist Prime Minister, Pedro Sanchez, must get the support of seven deputies of Mr. Puigdemont’s party, elected on July 23, so that the New Assembly will be renewed in office, which will meet for the preceding on Wednesday, August 16.
The “holiday room” of the Constitutional Court, which has three magistrates who are on duty during the summer to speed up the news, declared inadmissible on Wednesday the appeal filed by Mr. Puigdemont’s lawyers against this arrest warrant, confirmed on Thursday, August 10 in France Agency. – Urgent a spokesperson for the judicial institution.
Mr. Puigdemont lives in exile in Belgium since aborted attempts at secession from Spain and a self-determination referendum deemed illegal, organized in 2017 by the regional government of Catalonia, which he led at the time.
The decision of the three mayors, which was taken in the middle of the summer, almost on barracks, only a few days after filing the appeal, surprised the political class and the legal circles because it is very rare. Indeed, since 2017, all appeals related to secession attempts in Catalonia have been declared admissible by the Constitutional Court, which then examines them in plenary sessions. So much so that the judiciary of the same Constitutional Court decided to appeal against this judgment.
“A state strategy against independence”
Mr. Puigdemont’s lawyer, Gonzalo Boyé, joked about the speed of the decision. “You can’t say that there [Tribunal] constitutional does not work (…). We filed the appeal on July 31, and it has already been resolved.”he wrote on X (formerly Twitter).
Laura Borras, one of the leaders of Junts per Catalunya (JxCat), Mr. Puigdemont’s independence party, denounced X a decision made. “thinking about the nomination” of the next head of government. He referred to the paradoxical situation from which legislative elections on July 23 : Mr. Sanchez, whose Spanish Workers’ Party (PSOE) came second, with 121 seats, behind the People’s Party (PP, conservative) with 137 seats, despite everything, has the chance to gather the necessary support to lend oath as head of government thanks to the game of alliance.
But for that, he will have to get not neutrality, but a favorable vote in JxCat, which requires in return a referendum on self-determination and the amnesty of all the Catalans condemned for the attempted secession. Therefore the judgment is not, a priori, positive news for Mr. Sanchez.
The general secretary of the JxCat, Jordi Turull, thus, saw in the decision of the Constitutional Court a new proof that there was “a state strategy against separatism”. “And the strategy is not to close during the holidays”he added.
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The Socialist Party and the People’s Party did not comment, but the left circles note that, of the three mayors who make the “vacation room” of the Constitutional Court, the two who made the decision to reject them are clearly identified as conservatives. the third mayor opposed it.
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