The annual report of the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention recalls that Spain has not implemented its request to release the seven of the nine Catalan pro-independence political prisoners who denounced their imprisonment: Jordi Sànchez, Jordi Cuixart, Oriol Junqueras, Quim Forn, Josep Rull, Raül Romeva and Dolors Bassa.
In May last year, in a first document on Junqueras, Cuixart and Sànchez, who first resorted to it, this group described their imprisonment as arbitrary and urged the Spanish government to release them, compensate them and make a ‘thorough and independent’ investigation of the case. They also demanded that the Spanish government inform them, within six months, about the released.
In a second report on Forn, Rull, Romeva and Bassa, the conclusions were the same, and they reiterated that there had been a violation of rights such as freedom of expression, peaceful demonstration and association, the right to freedom and security, freedom of thought, equality before the law, the right to participate in public affairs, and that the political prisoners had been discriminated for their opinion in favour of Catalonia’s independence.
Last December, the president of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, José Antonio Guevara, insisted on the release of the Catalan political prisoners and asked Spain not to divert attention from this request, which he believed was a “most important issue”.