Puigdemont prepared to steer Catalonian govt from Belgium

Catalonia's former president vowed to form a new government in the region that recently elected politicians seeking to break away from Spain, brushing aside what he called Madrid's "threats" and "oppression".

Spanish prosecutors requested that the Supreme Court in Madrid reissue a European arrest warrant against him, El Pais newspaper reported Monday.

In early December, Spain's Supreme Court withdrew an worldwide arrest warrant for Catalonia's former leader in order to bring Puigdemont's case back exclusively into the jurisdiction of Spain.

Several fellow separatist lawmakers are already in custody in Spain over their role in the regional parliament unilaterally declaring independence on October 27 and Spain's general prosecutor office said Saturday that "it's inadmissible that the privilege of parliamentary immunity should be interpreted as impunity".

The Spanish government has charged roughly a dozen former Catalan ministers with various crimes, including sedition and rebellion, in relation to their actions leading up to the declaration of independence.

He arrived there to attend a private debate organised by the University of Copenhagen's Political Science Department. The trip is Puigdemont's first outside Belgium.

But Mr Puigdemont's supporters say it would be possible with modern technology.

AP reports that Torrent is the officer who chooses a candidate to form a government by the end of the month.

The Faeroes and Greenland have long sought more autonomy while allowing Denmark to handle their foreign affairs and defense.

Mr Torrent said Mr Puigdemont's candidacy to lead was "absolutely legitimate" despite the charges against him. The Faeroes are holding a referendum on a new constitution on April 25.

He said it was important to wait until "constitutional order" had returned to the region.

In Copenhagen, Puigdemont declined to comment any further on the day's events. Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy reiterated on Saturday it would be considered "illegal".

According the Danish parliament's diary, Puigdemont has also been invited to a meeting there today by Magni Arge, a deputy representing the Faroe Islands, which have their own independence movement seeking secession from Denmark.

  • Gwendolyn Kim