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'Madness' and 'punishment': Catalan leaders react to court’s decision to keep Junqueras in jail

ERC representative says that the Catalan leader has been “kidnapped” and Puigdemont states that he’s a “hostage”

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05 January 2018 04:33 PM

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ACN | Barcelona

Once the Spanish Supreme Court ruled to keep Oriol Junqueras in precautionary jail, it didn’t take long for Catalan political and social leaders to react.

Besides the Catalan vice president, deposed by the Spanish government, there are three more Catalan leaders in jail. These include deposed Catalan home affairs minister Joaquim Forn and pro-independence civil society leaders Jordi Sànchez and Jordi Cuixart.

Junqueras urges unity, love, and perseverance

Junqueras himself responded with a tweet published on his twitter account. It read: "In the coming days, stay strong and united. Transform indignation into courage and perseverance. Anger into love. Always think of others. In what we have to redo. Persist because I will persist." The jailed deposed minister finished his message by writing "thank you for all your support" and showing his appreciation.

  • "They call it precautionary prison but it’s a punishment for those who think differently”

    Marta Pascal · General coordinator of the pro-independence PDeCAT party

Jailed Catalan leaders are “seized” in Madrid’s prison, says Puigdemont

Carles Puigdemont said from Brussels, where he’s after being deposed by the Spanish government, that Junqueras is “seized” in the Estremera prison, along with other jailed Catalan political and social leaders. "They are no longer political prisoners, they are hostages," he pointed out.

Puigdemont also highlighted that "there is a conflict that needs to be resolved between Catalonia and Spain," and reminded that pro-independence parties have always been willing to dialogue.

“We’ll see each other before an international human rights court,” warns ERC representative

The spokesman for Esquerra Republicana (ERC) in Madrid, Gabriel Rufián, regretted Spanish court’s decision to keep Junqueras in jail and said that Catalan leader is “kidnapped” in a prison cell. “One day we’ll see each other before an international human rights court,” he added.  

“Today is a sad day,” states president of the Catalan parliament

The president of the Catalan parliament, Carme Forcadell, stated that “today is a sad day” due to the Spanish Supreme Court’s decision. “The Three Kings will come, but today four fathers won’t be able to be with their children,” she added, referring to the four Catalan political and social leaders that are currently in prison in Madrid.

Junqueras’ imprisonment is “madness”, says Barcelona mayor

Barcelona mayor Ada Colau stated that keeping Oriol Junqueras in prison is “madness and an absurdity.” She noted that precautionary jail is a “very exceptional measure” and, furthermore, that this is been used “for a political issue.”

The mayor of the Catalan capital also said that the Spanish court’s decision is “bad news”, both for the Junqueras family and democracy. "Discrepancies in politics are not only legitimate, but they are positive and necessary,” she pointed out. In addition, Colau highlighted that Junqueras hasn’t carried out any violent act.

“A punishment to those who think differently,” stresses PDeCAT general coordinator

The general coordinator of the pro-independence PDeCAT party, Marta Pascal, said that “they call it precautionary prison but it’s a punishment for those who think differently.” In addition, she noted that keeping Junqueras, Forn, Cuixart and Sànchez in prison makes no longer any sense. 

Oriol Junqueras’ attorney says decision is a pre-emptive “sentence”

Oriol Junqueras’ attorney, Andreu van den Eynde, stated that the document that keeps his client in precautionary detention is in reality a “sentence” for evidence that has not yet been discussed. He also noted that he is “disappointed” because the magistrates did not mention “the freedom of a person” that he spoke about in his argument. He added that the Supreme Court is “creating an alternate reality” where the vice president is seen as “a violent person or one who instigates violence.”

 

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  • Catalan vice president Oriol Junqueras and president Carles Puigdemont, now both deposed by the Spanish government, with the former in precautionary jail and the second in exile in Belgium on October 26 2017 in the Catalan parliament (by Pere Francesch)