Ousted Catalan Leader May Not Return to Spain Anytime Soon

Ousted Catalan Leader May Not Return to Spain Anytime Soon

The court accused Puigdemont of rebellion, sedition and embezzlement against the Spanish crown on Monday when he was also summoned to answer questions at week's end in a court in Madrid regarding his involvement in the Catalonia independence elections on October 1 and his part in the Catalonia Parliament's declaration of independence on Friday.

CATALONIA'S ousted president said yesterday he will carry on fighting for independence from exile in Brussels. "We have a lot of time to decide", he said.

Puigdemont and other removed Catalan officials intend to remain in Brussels and respond to any criminal charges "according to the mechanisms foreseen in the European Union in such circumstances", the statement read without elaboration. They include Junqueras, Raul Romeva, who handled the Catalan government's foreign affairs, and former government spokesman Jordi Turull.

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If Puigdemont does not appear before the court, the court may issue an arrest warrant against him and prevent him from taking part in the snap regional elections on December 21st. Bekaert, Puigdemont's Belgian lawyer, told Belgian broadcaster VTM on Wednesday that if Spain seeks Puigdemont's extradition, it would be up to Belgian judges, not the government, to make a decision. Puigdemont is in Belgium with several former ministers.

In total Puigdemont and 13 others, including all formers members of the Catalan Parliament Bureau have been accused of sedition and rebellion and have been called to testify this week.

But he has said he would not seek asylum and would return to Spain "immediately" if guaranteed a fair judicial process. "The reality is that Puidgemont has his home, his family and his daughters". "He should have faced the truth".

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Meanwhile, the speaker of Catalan's dissolved parliament Carme Forcadell and other former lawmakers have been summoned to the Supreme Court because they still have parliamentary immunity.

"We will see in the coming weeks what we are doing".

One lawyer for ousted Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont said that he is not expected to fly back to Spain soon despite being required to appear before the Spanish court this week to face charges against him for pushing for independence.

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