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Furious demonstrators block roads in Catalonia to protest the arrest of former president

Demonstrators enraged by the detention of former Catalan leader president Carles Puigdemont have blocked road in central Barcelona and across their region as the separatist politician remains in a German jail.

Transport authorities in the northeastern Spanish region said a main motorway remained blocked in Figueres, near the border with France. 

Demonstrators also stopped traffic in another highway leading to the city of Lleida, and a national road between Tarragona and Valencia.

Protesters caused disruptions early today on several roads in central Barcelona, the regional capital.

Demonstrators stopped traffic in another highway leading to the city of Lleida, and a national road between Tarragona and Valencia. Pictured: Riot police pushing back protesters 

Protesters caused disruptions early today on several roads in central Barcelona, the regional capital

Protesters caused disruptions early today on several roads in central Barcelona, the regional capital

Puigdemont was ousted and fled to Belgium. Last week, a Spanish Supreme Court judge charged the 55-year-old politician with rebellion and misuse of public funds. Pictured: A protester is carried by two riot policemen 

Puigdemont was ousted and fled to Belgium. Last week, a Spanish Supreme Court judge charged the 55-year-old politician with rebellion and misuse of public funds. Pictured: A protester is carried by two riot policemen 

Regional riot policemen stand guard in front of pro-independence protesters who blocked AP-7 toll road near the town of Figueres, in Girona, Catalonia

Regional riot policemen stand guard in front of pro-independence protesters who blocked AP-7 toll road near the town of Figueres, in Girona, Catalonia

Puigdemont was detained on Sunday, shortly after crossing the border into Germany from Denmark. Pictured: Protesters being held by riot policemen 

Puigdemont was detained on Sunday, shortly after crossing the border into Germany from Denmark. Pictured: Protesters being held by riot policemen 

Prosperous Catalonia has been marred by largely peaceful protests for more than six months, since a bid for secession from Spain began in earnest.

The Catalan parliament’s declaration of independence in late October following an ad-hoc referendum banned by the Spanish government received no international recognition and provoked a takeover of the regional government by Spanish authorities.

Puigdemont was ousted and fled to Belgium. Last week, a Spanish Supreme Court judge charged the 55-year-old politician with rebellion and misuse of public funds.

Spain then issued arrest warrants for six of the seven Catalan separatists who have fled the country. Puigdemont was detained on Sunday, shortly after crossing the border into Germany from Denmark.

Further decisions on Puigdemont’s immediate future appear unlikely before Easter. A court in Schleswig will decide on formal pre-extradition custody and whether his extradition is admissible. 

Such cases are typically dealt with in writing, without a hearing, though one is possible.

Prosperous Catalonia has been marred by largely peaceful protests for more than six months, since a bid for secession from Spain began in earnest. Pictured: People hold banners that reads in Catalan "Freedom for the political prisoners" in support of Catalonian politicians jailed on charges of sedition and condemning the arrest of Catalonia's former president 

Prosperous Catalonia has been marred by largely peaceful protests for more than six months, since a bid for secession from Spain began in earnest. Pictured: People hold banners that reads in Catalan “Freedom for the political prisoners” in support of Catalonian politicians jailed on charges of sedition and condemning the arrest of Catalonia’s former president 

 Further decisions on Puigdemont's immediate future appear unlikely before Easter. A court in Schleswig will decide on formal pre-extradition custody and whether his extradition is admissible. Pictured: Demonstrators yesterday 

 Further decisions on Puigdemont’s immediate future appear unlikely before Easter. A court in Schleswig will decide on formal pre-extradition custody and whether his extradition is admissible. Pictured: Demonstrators yesterday 

A picture of Carlos Puidgemont is fixed in front of the entrance building of a prison in Neumuenster, northern Germany today, where Carles Puigdemont, the fugitive ex-leader of Catalonia and ardent separatist, is believed to be held after he was arrested Sunday by German police on an international warrant as he tried to enter the country from Denmark

A picture of Carlos Puidgemont is fixed in front of the entrance building of a prison in Neumuenster, northern Germany today, where Carles Puigdemont, the fugitive ex-leader of Catalonia and ardent separatist, is believed to be held after he was arrested Sunday by German police on an international warrant as he tried to enter the country from Denmark

Germany’s criminal code – unlike Belgium’s, where Spain had earlier sought Puigdemont’s extradition – includes an offense that appears to be comparable to rebellion, the main accusation against the Catalan politician. 

It calls for prison sentences for anyone who ‘undertakes, by force or through threat of force’ to undermine the republic’s existence or change its constitutional order.

In a move celebrated by his supporters, the United Nations Human Rights Committee announced that it has registered a complaint by Puigdemont alleging that Spain has violated his political rights.

A group of lawyers and human rights experts lodged the case in March, claiming that Spain has violated human, civil and political rights in its crackdown on Catalonia’s independence bid. The Spanish government has six months to respond.



Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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