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Catalonia: Spanish Judge Jails Eight Sacked Ministers…Threatens Former Leader With Arrest

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Eight sacked Catalan ministers have been remanded in custody by a Spanish high court judge over the region’s push for independence. Prosecutors had asked the judge to detain eight of the nine former regional government members who turned up for questioning in Madrid. They are accused of rebellion, sedition and misuse of public funds.The prosecutor asked the judge to issue a European Arrest Warrant for ousted Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont. The request also covers four other dismissed Catalan ministers who did not show up in court in Madrid as requested, but have been in Belgium since Monday. Spain has been gripped by a constitutional crisis since a referendum on independence from Spain was held in Catalonia on 1 October in defiance of a constitutional court ruling that had declared it illegal.Last week, Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy imposed direct rule on Catalonia, dissolving the regional parliament and calling local elections for 21 December. This came after Catalan lawmakers voted to declare the independence of the affluent north-eastern region. The Catalan government said that of the 43% of potential voters who took part in the referendum, 90% were in favour of independence.Photo Credit: Getty

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