Finnish Police Receive Request for Extradition of Ex-Catalan Head Puigdemont

Spain rejects plan to install nationalist Catalan leader

Spain rejects plan to install nationalist Catalan leader

A Spanish Supreme Court probe into last year's attempt to secede Catalonia from Spain wraps up Friday with the judge expected to charge 28 regional politicians and separatist leaders with offenses that may include rebellion. Pro-independence candidate Jordi Turull received only 64 out of the 68 votes needed to secure the necessary absolute majority.

In order to be successfully appointed president, Turull will be reliant upon the support of the anti-capitalist pro-independence CUP party. Since then, the central government in Madrid has sought to neutralize the secessionist drive by taking direct control of the region and calling for new elections in December.

The court's decision will likely put an end to a planned vote this Saturday at the Catalan regional parliament to pick a new leader after Mr Puigdemont's departure a year ago.

Llarena's prison orders bring the total number of jailed separatist Catalan leaders to nine. He didn't specify what the dialogue would entail.

Some demonstrators also reported injuries, but there were no reports of how many were injured or the severity of wounds inflicted.

He told the Catalan parliament: "I prefer to accept the risk of being a victim of injustice than to back away from what is happening".

Thirteen, including ousted Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont and members of his Cabinet, are charged with rebellion, which is punishable by up to 30 years in prison.

A Supreme Court judge overseeing the rebellion investigation plans to issue indictments today, and Mr Turull could be among those charged. That could lead to Turull being imprisoned and, at a later stage, possibly banned from public office.

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THE CATALAN PARLIAMENT will convene for a hastily arranged debate on whether Jordi Turull will become the next president of Catalonia, despite his possible arrest by Spanish authorities on Friday. The latest failure, on Thursday, started a two-month countdown for either a government to be formed or for another ballot in the restive region.

The pro-independence parties represented in parliament, who hold a majority, agreed to the surprise move due to the fact that the Spanish Supreme Court may order the imprisonment of Turull as early as Friday, 23 March, along with other Catalan officials now under investigation for their role in Catalonia's disputed declaration of independence and the preceding referendum on the issue.

Spain's Supreme Court has rejected an appeal to release two Catalan independence leaders from pre-trial detention while a judge investigates Catalonia's illegal attempt to secede from Spain previous year.

Friday's rulings at the Supreme Court in Madrid were considered the most serious challenge to date for the Catalan independence movement.

Ms Rovira, who made no mention of her whereabouts, said fleeing was also the only way to continue being a mother to her daughter, Inés.

Jordi Turull, one of the 13 charged with rebellion and a close Puigdemont ally, narrowly failed in an earlier leadership bid on Thursday to win a majority of votes in the Catalan parliament.

"This maneuver is one step further in the pro-independence strategy of confronting with the state", said Roberto Bermúdez de Castro, the secretary of state for territorial administration and one of the key officials in charge of dealing with Catalonia.

Puigdemont and Jordi Sanchez, a leader of a prominent grassroots group who is in jail over his role in the illegal campaign to split from Spain, have both withdrawn their bids for the presidency because they could not attend a swearing-in session.

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