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Catalan chief Puigdemont seeks parliament protection for vote

AP , Monday 29 Jan 2018
Puigdemont
File Photo: Catalan president Carles Puigdemont poses before an AFP interview in Girona on September 30, 2017. (Photo: AFP)
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Catalonia's ex-president, Carles Puigdemont, is asking the region's parliament in a letter to guarantee his right to attend a session this week in which he hopes to be re-elected government leader, without being arrested.

Spain's Constitutional Court ruled Saturday that Puigdemont, who fled to Belgium following an illegal declaration of independence last October, must be present in parliament to be chosen as the region's chief in Tuesday's session. A Spanish judge has ordered Puigdemont's arrest on possible rebellion and sedition charges.

The Constitutional Court also said Puigdemont must get court permission to attend the session. Initially, Puigdemont was expected to seek that, but his lawyer said Monday this was unlikely. The lawyer did not rule out Puigdemont's attendance.

The Constitutional Court ruled the session would not be valid if Puigdemont attends without the permit.

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