October 21, 2021

Beyond Going Long

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Former Catalan Prime Minister Puigdemont has been arrested in Italy

An arrest warrant has been issued in Spain for Puigdemont and two other members of the European Parliament living in exile.

Former Catalan Prime Minister Carles Puigdemont, who has been living in exile in Belgium since 2017 after a failed attempt to declare Catalonia, was arrested in Italy on Thursday. This was announced by his lawyer, according to Agence France-Presse.

Puigdemont’s lawyer, Gonzalo Bui, wrote on Twitter that his client was “arrested after arriving in Sardinia, where he arrived as a member of the European Parliament”.

Puigdemont’s office explained that on Thursday afternoon he traveled from Brussels to Alghero to attend the Adivolk International Fair and to meet the Sardinian regional leader and the local ombudsman. “When we arrived at Alghero airport, he was stopped by the Italian border police. Tomorrow he will be available to the judges of the Court of Appeal of the city of Sassari, who will decide whether to release him or release him (Spain),” his chief of staff, Luis Alli, said on Twitter.

An arrest warrant has been issued in Spain for Puigdemont and two other members of the European Parliament living in exile. They had to do so in connection with the failed attempt to declare Catalonia independence when they organized a referendum, which, however, was unconstitutional, according to Madrid.

However, the European Parliament, Puigdemont, as well as two other pro-Catalan independence MEPs – Anthony Comino and Clara Ponsati – were stripped of their immunity in 2019 in March.

At the end of June, the government in Madrid pardoned nine Catalan separatist leaders, who were among 12 people convicted of participating in an illegal referendum and subsequent declaration of independence.

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