Catalan parliament delays naming leader but backs Puigdemont

Fugitive Catalan chief seeks parliament protection for vote

But on Tuesday morning, Catalan parliamentary speaker Roger Torrent announced his decision to put the investiture on hold, while insisting that Mr Puigdemont remained the candidate to be president.

Elsa Artadi, spokeswoman for Mr Puigdemont's Together for Catalonia (JxCat) coalition, said "the guarantees are already there today and so is the absolute majority of 68 seats".

Catalonia's independence drive has sparked clashes with the Spanish government and judiciary, which say that any vote or move toward secession from Spain is unconstitutional.

Catalan lawmakers had been due to formally vote him into office yesterday afternoon.

Torrent said he would ask the regional parliament's lawyers to file an appeal against the decision of the court. "I will go as far as necessary to defend the rights of President Puigdemont in order to ensure he faces an investiture debate with all guarantees".

In resolution of constitutional of Saturday, eleven magistrates who composed full extraordinary expressly warned President of Parliament, Roger Torrent, and or members of Bureau of House of responsibilities "including penal ones" In which y may incur in event of failing to abide by suspension and proceed with investiture of Catalan former president without requirements.

Torrent said he had now "personally committed to guaranteeing his immunity" after the former First Minister petitioned the Speaker for such protection on Monday. "Parliament represents the will of all the Catalan people and for this reason, it and the Catalan people deserve respect". He urged Catalan MPs to obey the law and choose another candidate. An official speaking anonymously in line with government rules said that pressure applied by the government and the country's top court "have prevented a mockery of our democracy".

If he returns to Spain, Puigdemont faces the prospect of arrest for leading an illegal independence bid.

"The most prudent thing would be for the speaker of the parliament to put forward a clean candidate".

Let's take a step back.

Joan Tardà of the Catalan Republican Left party told the newspaper La Vanguardia: "What's essential is that we have a government".

The protesters shouted slogans in support of Puigdemont and Catalonia's independence.



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