Spain: the pardon granted to the Catalan leaders called into question?

Giant portrait of former Catalan regional government vice-president Oriol Junqueras, in his hometown of Sant Vicenc dels Horts, near Barcelona, ​​in June 2021 after his release.

AP - Joan Mateu

Text by: RFI Follow

1 min

Almost a year after the pardon granted to the nine Catalan separatist leaders, the Spanish courts have finally accepted an appeal against their release, we learned on Tuesday, May 24, 2022. The decision is controversial in Catalonia.


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With our correspondent in Barcelona,

​​Élise Gazengel

Appeals against the pardon granted to the nine Catalan separatist leaders were rejected last January by the Spanish Supreme Court.

But two judges have since left and been replaced, which swayed the majority of the court.

Consequence: this Tuesday, the Supreme Court contradicted itself and finally accepted the appeals presented by the Spanish right and far-right parties.

🔴🇪🇸 The grace of Catalan leaders questioned?

After a change in composition, the Supreme Court announces that it has finally accepted the appeal of several right-wing parties against the pardon granted almost a year ago (June 22, 2021) to former independence leaders

— Elise Gazengel (@EliseGaz) May 24, 2022

These pardons were granted by the president of the socialist government, Pedro Sánchez, on June 22, with a view to easing tensions.

But the law stipulates that this measure must be argued, and it is on the legitimacy of the grounds for release that the Court will have to rule soon.

The government spokeswoman reacted on Tuesday by saying that these pardons were not only legal, but useful.

For his part, Oriol Junqueras, former Catalan vice-president, assured that he would not give in " 

to threats of returning to prison

" and that he would continue to fight for the independence of the region.

If his release is overturned, he could still spend ten years behind bars.

►In brief: EU justice restores immunity for Catalan MEP Carles Puigdemont


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  • Spain

  • Catalonia

  • Justice