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The defence team of the Catalan pro-independence activist, Jordi Cuixart, has responded to the Supreme Court following the request of judge Manuel Marchena that the parties involved in the 2019 leaders' trial make their submissions prior to the judges' review of the convictions resulting from the reform of the Spanish Penal Code. In the letter sent to the court, consulted by the ACN agency, the former Òmnium Cultural president, one of the social and political leaders who took Catalonia to the 1st October independence referendum, refuses to have his sentence reviewed, considering that this "does not recognize, nor repair, nor establish guarantees of non-repetition of the violation of fundamental rights" carried out by the Spanish state. On the contrary, Cuixart is committed to the route towards European justice, and asserts that this is the path to review the rights violations suffered at all levels of the independence process. More specifically, he recalls that the independence process entailed "very serious violation" of the fundamental rights of assembly, freedom of expression and ideological freedom in defence of the right to self-determination suffered by Cuixart during the provisional prison and subsequent conviction. For this reason, they will continue the process at the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, and await the Spanish review of the sentence to be carried out ex officio, as was already expected and as the four Junts politicians among the nine political prisoners will also do.

Cuixart to ignores the Supreme Court 

The text, of little more than four pages, insists that all of Cuixart's actions that were judged in the trial were protected by the legitimate exercise of his civil and political rights, making use in some moments of the framework provided by civil disobedience, and under no circumstances fit the definition of the crime of sedition. "For it to be stated that these facts constitute an exercise of a fundamental right beyond the strict debate of criminal legality is a present and future democratic necessity in a context where Cuixart himself insists that 'we will do it again'", says the text presented by Òmnium. The letter to the court recalls that all these allegations were repeatedly ignored by the criminal chamber of the Supreme Court, whose members were "reprimanded for their lack of jurisdiction and impartiality", and it is this same court that will now resolve the review of the sentence, "perpetuating the violations invoked". For all these reasons, Cuixart maintains his appeal to the European Court of Human Rights with the objective of recognizing and condemning the violation of rights by the Spanish state and guaranteeing reparation and the state's non-repetition.

Antich: "The procedure will not end in Madrid"

For his part, the current president of Òmnium, Xavier Antich, has affirmed that "the root of the problem is that the Spanish state continues to obsess and refuses to recognize that it violates the most fundamental rights in order to pursue political dissent in the name of the sacrosanct unity of Spain". "We will continue to practice civil disobedience; we only address the Supreme Court to say that defending self-determination is not a crime and to let them know that we will not stop until we obtain a conviction against the Spanish state at the European Court of Human Rights and the recognition, reparation and guarantees of no repetition of each and every one of the violated rights", Antich stated. "Out of coherence, out of legal conviction and out of conviction for the defence of human rights," he said, reprising words from the defence made in 2019, "we are convinced that, if this long list of serious violations is not resolved and Jordi Cuixart is convicted, the present procedure will not end in Madrid but in an international courtroom with the conviction of Spain for violation of human rights".