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"It is essential that political problems are solved from politics." That is how the Spanish government responded this Wednesday to judge Manuel García-Castellón after he announced a decision that underscores the Spanish judiciary's lawfare approach to the Catalan independence movement. The National Audience judge sent a letter rogatory request to the Swiss authorities to locate the general secretary of the Catalan Republican Left (ERC), Marta Rovira, who has been exiled in Switzerland since 2018. The response to the judge was given by education minister Pilar Alegría, who, on the occasion of the first cabinet meeting of Pedro Sánchez's new executive, made her debut as government spokesperson.

In her response to a question about the prosecution of Marta Rovira by the National Audience, the spokesperson said that the Pedro Sánchez government has always been "coherent" in a strategy of "improving coexistence". "This is the path we want to continue on," she said. In any case, she reiterated her "maximum respect" for any judicial decision. "This table is not here to offer opinions on judicial resolutions, but to respect them," she asserted.

The amnesty in the European Parliament: "It is fully constitutional"

At the same time, she was also asked about the Catalan amnesty bill, in clear relation to the lawfare perpetrated by judge García-Castellón. This time, however, she referred to the debate that, as she spoke, was about to begin in the European Parliament to address the amnesty law, and she assured that the draft law is "fully constitutional".


Pilar Alegría: "You ask me about these accords which are adopted between political parties, and as [government] minister-spokesperson, I can't really answer"

In fact, the spokesperson, also minister of education, defended the measure by noting that the legal services of the Congress of Deputies have given the green light to the parliamentary processing of the bill whose text was agreed between the Socialists (PSOE) and the Catalan pro-independence parties. She did, however, respect the independence of any chamber of representation to debate any issue.

The PSOE "complies": it will meet with Junts this month

She also had to answer questions about the negotiations between the PSOE and the pro-independence parties, which allowed the continuity of Pedro Sánchez in government, and she was urged to confirm whether the PSOE plans to meet this November with Together for Catalonia (Junts) - as promised in the agreement reached with Carles Puigdemont's party - as well as if she could give any details about the figure of the international verifier.

The new spokesperson for the PSOE-Sumar coalition executive did not want to go into any kind of detail, arguing that she was appearing this Tuesday as a spokesperson for the government, whereas the accords were between political parties. However, she reiterated the will of the Socialists to respect the pact signed with Carles Puigdemont's party. Alegría replied that "what is agreed in a clear, public and transparent manner is fulfilled".