Misc 13/06/2019

Romeva: "I call on all democrats to build a world in which there are no political trials"

The former Foreign Minister criticizes the prosecution for "seeking to chastise an ideology”

Ot Serra
2 min

MadridRaül Romeva took advantage of his closing arguments to call "on all democrats to build a world in which there are neither political trials nor political prisoners" and asked the court to take a "brave" decision. "There aren’t twelve people before you, but rather two million people who are troubled by what has brought us here and what will happen in the future, as a consequence of what decision you take", the former Catalan Foreign Minister warned the seven judges. Romeva went on to say that not one person who supports independence "will change their minds" because of the verdict.

Romeva did not spare the prosecution his criticisms for having constructed a narrative which equates the Catalan independence process with a rebellion, adding that they sought to "chastise and punish an ideology". Romeva went on to say that the fact that "the trial has taken place against a clearly ideological backdrop backed by reports which depict a reality which clearly never existed. That worries me personally and it worries Catalonia in general". He warned that "repeating a lie a thousand times doesn’t make it true". Romeva went on to criticise the Prosecutor's Office for accusing the defendants of harbouring an "irrational hatred" of Spain, a claim which Romeva called "deceitful and irresponsible". "If you read the thousands of letters we’ve written in prison, you’d be left in no doubt", he said.

Romeva went on to say that the independence movement isn’t motivated by its hatred of Spain, but instead by its "frustration" after the 2010 Statute was watered down and the "disbelief at seeing that Spain has still not offered a political solution". Romeva went on to defend the decision to hold the referendum and stated that he hadn’t broken any laws, even if the vote was suspended by the Constitutional Court, calling it an exercise in the right of self-determination, which he insisted must be “non-violent".