Belgium: Puigdemont demands 'immediate' freedom for imprisoned Catalan politicians

The former Catalan President Carles Puigdemont addressed his supporters, speaking from the balcony of his residence in Waterloo on Saturday. Joined by the current Catalan leader Quim Torra and several other officials, Puigdemont greeted more than 150 people who gathered in front of his house. In his speech, he demanded that imprisoned Catalan politicians be released «immediately,» saying «we... Еще don't want them to be at home in prisons, we want them [to be] at home.» Puigdemont fled to Belgium in October, after being accused by the Spanish government of sedition, rebellion and misuse of public funds over his role in the push for the Catalan divorce from Spain. On May 25, Puigdemont was detained in Germany under a European Arrest Warrant issued by Madrid. The arrest occurred at a petrol station in the northern state of Schleswig-Holstein while Puigdemont was returning to Belgium from his journey to Finland. However, the district court in the German State of Schleswig-Holstein ruled he would not be extradited and released him on bail, causing a Spanish judge to withdraw the warrant. Puigdemont still faces a charge of misusing public funds, meaning he could be arrested if he returned to Spain.

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