Puigdemont to remain in Belgium after the Catalan elections

The deposed Catalan First Minister Carles Puigdemont and four of his Minister that fled to Belgium after Spain imposed direct rule on the region will remain in Belgium beyond 21 December. On 21 December Catalans go to the polls to elect a new parliament.

The five Catalan politicians will remain here awaiting the appeal that has been lodged against their eventual deportation.

The news that Mr Puigdemont and his ministers plan to remain in Belgium beyond 21 December comes from the politician’s Catalan lawyer Jaume Alonso Cuevillas. Speaking on the Catalan radio station e Rac1, Mr Cuevillas said.

"Whatever happens they will definitely remain in Brussels beyond 21 December and I think even until mid-January”.

"I am convinced that they will go to the Appeals’ Court and the Court of Cassation to prevent Belgium sending them back to Spain”, the solicitor added.

Mr Puigdemont and four of his ministers came to Belgium after Spain imposed direct rule. The Spanish authorities did so after the Catalan Government declared independence on 28 October. Several Catalan Minister and the leaders of two pro-independence groups are currently being held in Spanish Goals.