Confusion in the European Parliament within days of the elections. Yesterday, it allowed all of Spain's new MEPs to collect their credentials, except pro-independence Catalans Carles Puigdemont and Toni Comín; today it's suspended all those provisional accreditations.
The decision was taken by the chamber's president, Antonio Tajani, following a request from Spanish parties PSOE, PP and Cs, arguing that the results are not yet final with counting still ongoing. Tajani has sent a letter to the three parties expressing regret that the "administrative practice may cause political disturbances in Spain" and that he has given instructions to suspend the accreditation of all incoming Spanish MEPs "in order to avoid any possible interference in a national procedure".
There had been arguments in Spain that, in order to take their seats, Spain's new MEPs would have to swear or pledge the Constitution in person in Madrid, seen by others as a way to block Puigdemont and Comín who risk arrest if they return. This, however, seemed contradicted by members being allowed to register yesterday. Today's decision means Spain's MEPs will have to wait longer after their colleagues from other countries can already start working and have access to relevant areas of the Parliament buildings.
Journalist Jean Quatremer, specialist in European issues with the French newspaper Libération, said the situation had "reached the peak of ridicule". He continued on Twitter that it was "all to not deliver provisional accreditation to the Catalan pro-independence MEPs".
Là, on atteint le summum du ridicule... Et tout cela pour ne pas délivrer une attestation provisoire aux députés européens indépendantistes catalans... https://t.co/IG2kJQSMWE— Jean Quatremer (@quatremer) 30 de maig de 2019
The head of the international bureau for Belgian French-language paper Le Soir, Jureck Kuczkiewicz, said the situation was extraordinary, that "the discrimination is no longer between the two Catalans and the other new Spanish MEPs: it's between all the new Spanish MEPs and those from other countries, who will be able to work already with provisional accreditation".
Rocambolesque! Donc maintenant, la discrimination ce n'est plus entre les 2 Catalans et les autres nouveaux eurodéputés espagnols: c'est entre tous les nouveaux députés espagnols et ceux des autres pays, qui eux pourront déjà travailler avec une accréditation provisoire... https://t.co/WZRkS5dcUp— Jurek Kuczkiewicz (@jujikucz) 30 de maig de 2019