The Barcelona City Council Commission for the Presidency agreed Wednesday on an institutional statement calling for the transfer of pro-independence prisoners to Catalan penitentiaries while they continue on remand. It argues that the distance to their current prisons “carries a social punishment that violates rights acknowledged by international legislation and is a violation of human rights”.
The statement was signed by the government of BComú plus the representatives of the PDECat, ERC, the CUP, as well as the unaffiliated councilman Gerard Ardanuy (Demòcrates). In the near future, the city aims to host a reception for the family members of Oriol Junqueras, Joaquim Forn, Jordi Sànchez, and Jordi Cuixart, according to the official statement.
The text considers that applying a precautionary measure like prison without bail “hinders the normalization of the political situation in Catalonia”, and offers to provide emotional and psychological support to the prisoners’ families, with whom it expresses the Council’s solidarity.
The City Council is working with organizations dedicated to defending human rights, as well as stakeholders in the civic and legal communities, to plan the reception for families, which will be presided over by Ada Colau, Barcelona’s mayor, and Jaume Asens, deputy mayor for Citizens’ Rights. The event aims to be an act of support for the families and a space for dialog.
The Council noted that it has repeatedly demanded the release of the four prisoners, and suspended its institutional activity in protest. It also held a special plenary session in which it approved another institutional statement calling for their release.
This declaration was accompanied by the placement of a banner calling for their freedom on the City Hall facade, and a yellow ribbon on the balcony, and the City Council also illuminated fountains around the city with the color yellow, as a symbol of support.
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