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Spain: ‘We have a duty to avoid far-right government’ – Catalan ex-vice president speaks from jail

The former vice president of the Catalan government and candidate for the ERC party (Republican Left of Catalonia) in the forthcoming general elections in Spain, Oriol Junqueras, said that his party “would not facilitate a far-right government, neither directly or by default” at a press conference from prison on Friday. At the press conference, organised by the Catalan News Agency (ACN) and connected via videolink to the Soto de Real prison outside Madrid, Junqueras emphasised that “Any European democrat has a duty to try and avoid far-right governments in their respective countries. To try and do so democratically, of course.” Junqueras opened the door to a confidence-and-supply agreement, although he did issue a warning to potential partners. “Does this mean we will give away our support, our votes? No, it means that we will not allow a far-right government, yes, that’s true, but we will be absolutely demanding in every area regards conditions, actions, decisions that we could take with whichever government as long as it does not come from the not far-right.” Junqueras spoke to the media from the Soto de Real prison after spending one year and five months in pre-trial detention for his involvement in the Catalan independence referendum and declaration of independence in October 2017. The press conference via videolink was permitted by the Central Electoral Board, the body in charge of this month’s general election.

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