The European Parliament has banned an event planned for next Monday with Catalan presidents Carles Puigdemont and Quim Torra under pressure from Spain. PP, PSOE and Cs had called for them to take this step, cancelling the event organised by Flemish party N-VA.
Parliamentary security officials have decided to suspend the event, arguing there is a "high risk" it could "pose a threat to the maintenance of public order on Parliament's premises" (emphasis ours). They cite the recent occupation of European Parliament and Commission buildings in Barcelona by pro-independence protesters and "the tensions linked to the start of the trial against pro-independence leaders".
They also express concern at the "lack of information over the event's participants" and warn that going ahead could lead to "incidents in or around the Parliament". As such, they conclude that "the security threat linked to the event cannot be mitigated by the Parliament's security services" and, as such, they won't authorise it.
Besides the letter from PSOE, PP and Cs, PP's spokesperson in the Parliament, Esteban González Pons asked Spanish interior minister Fernando Grande-Marlaska to "find the legal formula" to arrest Puigdemont if he enters the Parliament. MEP Enrique Calvet, meanwhile, wrote his own letter claiming that the presence of Torra and Puigdemont in the chamber "could put everyone's security at risk".