Catalan independence: Carles Puigdemont in Belgium, lawyer says


portrait of Carles Puigdemont seen through a window of the Palau de la Generalitat, 30 October 2017Picture copyright
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Mr Puigdemont has left Catalonia however his portrait was nonetheless hanging in authorities buildings on Monday

Sacked Catalan President Carles Puigdemont has gone to Belgium, a lawyer he has employed there says.

The lawyer, Paul Bekaert, didn’t touch upon studies that Mr Puigdemont could possibly be getting ready an asylum declare.

Spanish prosecutor have referred to as for rebel costs to be introduced towards him and different organisers of Catalonia’s banned independence referendum.

The Spanish central authorities took direct management of Catalonia on Monday, changing sacked officers.

It suspended the area’s autonomy and referred to as for contemporary elections after Mr Puigdemont and his authorities declared independence final week.

Belgian lawyer Paul Bekaert stated Mr Puigdemont was now within the Belgian capital, Brussels.

“I am his lawyer in case he wants me,” he stated. “In the meanwhile there aren’t any particular dossiers I’m getting ready for him.”

Theo Francken, Belgium’s immigration minister, stated over the weekend that an asylum utility was “not unrealistic” however Prime Minister Charles Michel later stated it was “completely not on the agenda”.

Spanish media reported that Mr Puigdemont had met Flemish politicians in Brussels. The TV station La Sexta reported (in Spanish) that he was there with 5 of his sacked authorities’s ministers:

  • Meritxell Serret, agriculture minister
  • Antoni Comín, well being minister
  • Dolors Bbada, labour minister
  • Meritxell Borrás, governance minister
  • Joaquim Forn, inside minister

Spain’s Lawyer Common José Manuel Maza referred to as on Monday for rebel, sedition and misuse of funds costs to be introduced towards Catalan leaders.

If discovered responsible of rebel, Mr Puigdemont may face a jail time period of as much as 30 years.

Beneath the Spanish authorized system, Mr Maza’s requests can be thought of by a choose.

What else occurred on Monday?

The working day handed off peacefully regardless of some officers defying directions from Madrid to not flip up for work.

Any ministers who arrived at their workplaces got hours to go away below menace of “motion” by Catalonia’s regional police drive, Mossos.

Madrid’s short-term transfer to impose direct management by invoking Article 155 of the structure – a primary for Spain – will see as many as 150 of the area’s prime officers changed.

  • Puigdemont: The person who needs to interrupt up Spain

Mr Puigdemont and his vice-president Oriol Junqueras reject the central authorities’s strikes, arguing that they will solely be faraway from workplace by the residents of Catalonia.

What’s subsequent for Catalan autonomy?

Madrid has referred to as for contemporary regional elections on 21 December.

A spokeswoman for Mr Puigdemont’s PDeCAT occasion stated it will discipline candidates “with conviction”. The ex-president may run in new elections if he has not been jailed by then, in keeping with Spain’s Overseas Minister Alfonso Dastis.

  • What powers has Catalonia now misplaced?
  • The case for and towards independence

On Monday, Mr Dastis stated he hoped the forthcoming elections would badist to “restore authorized governance and rule of regulation in Catalonia”.

How did we get right here?

Spain has been gripped by a constitutional disaster since a referendum, organised by Mr Puigdemont’s separatist authorities, was held on 1 October in defiance of a constitutional courtroom ruling that had declared it unlawful.

The Catalan authorities stated that of the 43% of potential voters who took half, 90% have been in favour of independence.

On Friday the regional parliament declared independence.

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy then introduced the dissolution of the regional parliament and the elimination of Mr Puigdemont as Catalan chief.

Mr Puigdemont has urged “democratic opposition” to direct rule from Madrid.

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Media captionFlags in Catalonia and what they imply
  • Does Catalonia need to depart Spain?
  • Actuality Verify: Police violence in Catalonia

Earlier than this, the area had one of many best ranges of self-government in Spain.

It has its personal parliament, police drive and public broadcaster, in addition to a authorities and president.

Catalans had a spread of powers in lots of coverage areas from tradition and setting to communications, transportation, commerce and public security.

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