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30 de març 2019

Letter in The Times by parliamentary observers

On March 29, a letter was published in the Times by parliamentary observers of the 1 October 2017 Catalan independence referendum, complaining about the trial against Catalan political leaders.
Click here if need be to access the whole text.

Original: https://www.elnacional.cat/ca/politica/quatre-diputats-britanics-1-o-neguen-violencia-votants_369748_102.html

Catalan court case

Sir, on October 1 2017 we were parliamentary observers of the Catalan independence referendum along with other parliamentarians from across Europe. We have been following the trial taking place in Spain supreme court of 12 Catalan leaders acccused of rebellion and sedition. Under spanish law rebellion is defined as a "violent public uprising".

In recent days officers of the Guardia Civil, the paramilitary police sent to Catalonia to stop the independence referendum, have described those days as being an "insurrectionary period" and said that protesters attacked them.

The former Spanish secretary of state for security, José Antonio Nieto, admitted that Spanish police used force on October 1 2017, but that was because the police were under threat and that some of their colleagues had been isolated or surrounded. On the day of the referendum, all the protests that we witnessed against police raids on polling stations in order to seize ballot boxes, which involved on occasion forcible enty and the batoning of those trying to protect the polling stations, were entirely non-violent. Indeed, the only violence we saw was committed by the police against citizens.

Hywel Williams M.P.
Lord rennard
Joanna Cherry M.P.
Douglas Chapman, M.P.

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