Catalan Parties Fall Out Over Puigdemont’s Reinstatement

The Republican Left now calls for a candidate who is not in legal trouble.

Oriol Junqueras and Carles Puigdemont, the leaders of the Catalan ruling party, deliver a news conference in Barcelona, Spain, March 1, 2017
Oriol Junqueras and Carles Puigdemont, the leaders of the Catalan ruling party, deliver a news conference in Barcelona, Spain, March 1, 2017 (Generalitat de Catalunya/Rubén Moreno)

Catalonia’s second-largest independence party, the Republican Left, has rejected the bid of its ally, Together for Catalonia, to reinstate Carles Puigdemont as regional president.

The parties, with support from the far-left Popular Unity Candidacy (CUP), recently changed the law to make it possible for Puigdemont to be sworn in from abroad. But the Republican Left now calls for a candidate who is not in legal trouble.

Puigdemont is held in Germany awaiting possible extradition to Spain for declaring Catalan independence following the October 1 referendum. The new law is almost certain to be stuck down by the Constitutional Court.

Yet the hardline CUP maintains that Puigdemont is the only legitimate candidate. It has threatened to pull out of the separatist coalition if the other parties back down.