Catalonia’s ousted leader Carles Puigdemont agreed on Tuesday to a snap election called by Spain’s central government when it took control of the region to stop it breaking away, but he said the fight for independence would go on. Spain’s High Court issued a summons for Puigdemont and 13 members of his sacked administration to testify in Madrid on Thursday and Friday as the court starts processing charges of rebellion, sedition and breach of trust against them. Under Spain’s legal system, a judge will then decide whether Puigdemont should go to jail pending a comprehensive investigation and potential trial.
Puigdemont travelled to Brussels after the Catalan regional parliament issued a unilateral declaration of independence on Friday, and it was not immediately clear if he would heed the summons to appear before the Madrid court.
Belgium’s crisis centre said it was evaluating whether Puigdemont needed to be protected by Belgian authorities while he was staying in the country, Belga news agency reported.
He had said earlier on Tuesday he would return to Spain only when given unspecified “guarantees” by the Spanish government.