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The issue, said CUP deputy Albert Botran, was the shutting down of parliamentary debate on Spain's king emeritus Juan Carlos I. But Botran himself ended up being shut up - several times - by the speaker, Meritxell Batet, who said he was out of order. The speaker of the Spanish Congress withdrew the floor from Botran after he took advantage of his turn at the rostrum to accuse the procedural Bureau of the lower house of systematically "censoring" any debate on initiatives related to the monarchy.

During the debate on a bill on payment defaults, the MP from the Catalan left-wing pro-independence CUP party communicated his support for the initiative, but then devoted the rest of his speech to denouncing the "abuse of power" which, in his opinion, the Bureau had showed. Specifically, he criticized that, "once again", the Bureau had rejected the motion that the CUP had presented for parliamentary debate, which, among other issues, urged the Spanish government to withdraw the title of king emeritus from Juan Carlos I as a result of his alleged irregularities, including corruption connected with Saudi Arabia, an issue being investigated by the Supreme Court prosecutors.

Speaker Batet did not accept him speaking on this matter because, she explained, "it deals with a matter outside the competence of the government", also referring to articles 56.3 and 65 of the Spanish Constitution, which refer to the inviolability of the king. These same arguments have been applied up till now to veto any debate on several initiatives calling for the establishment of commissions of inquiry into Juan Carlos I raised by government junior coalition partner Unidas Podemos as well as other left-wing parties Más País and Compromís, and the large block of nationalist and pro-independence parties from Catalonia, Euskadi and Galicia.

In response to the complaints made at the rostrum by the CUP deputy, the speaker asked him to adhere to the issue up for debate, but Botran ignored this request and continued to criticise the Bureau to allow one family to remain "above the law."

"The Bureau carries out censorship"

"There is no other name for this but censorship," Botran proclaimed, stressing that there had already been "eleven or twelve" occasions on which the Bureau - presided over by the speaker Batet - has vetoed initiatives related to the monarchy because it is considered a "taboo" issue.

Faced with the Catalan deputy's insistence on continuing to speak on the issue of the monarchy and using his speaking time, as he put it, to "reject the censorship practiced by the congressional Bureau", Batet gave him two warnings that he would lose the floor if he persisted in his attitude.

Still at the rostrum, the CUP deputy replied: "I need to talk about what I think I need to talk about, in these circumstances", insisting on the need to "prosecute each and every one of the crimes that the monarchy may have committed with everyone's money." After these words, the speaker decided to end his speaking turn for good.


"This week we have been able to confirm yet again that the Bureau of the Spanish Congress exercises censorship over the parliamentary parties in any initiative with regard to the monarchy and even the control of executive's relationship with the monarchy,..." said Albert Botran outside the Congress in Madrid today.

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