European arrest warrant issued for Puigdemont

Catalan president in Belgium with 4 ministers, others in jail

03 November, 10:44

    ROME - Spain has issued a European arrest warrant for deposed Catalan President Carles Puigdemont, according to his attorney.

    "I was informed by my client that the warrant was issued against the president and the four other ministers who are in Belgium," Paul Bekaert told Belgian TV channel VRT.

    "It means that the Spanish justice system will now send an extradition request to the federal prosecutors in Brussels," he said.

    Yesterday a Spanish judge ordered the arrest of eight of the 13 members of the democratically elected government of Carles Puigdemont, accused of "sedition" and "rebellion" for having non-violently advanced the political project of Catalan independence. Tens of thousands of people took to the streets on Thursday evening in Catalan cities to protest the jailing of the deposed government figures, chanting "Llibertat" and "This isn't justice, it's dictatorship!" Puigdemont and four of his ministers - who went to Belgium following the decision by the Spanish government last Saturday to disband the Catalan regional government - are still free and in "exile" there.

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