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Via @glynbeddau

As Europe sees the Show Trial of Catalonian Independence  leaders , we can ask why Western Democracies which are so vocal about abuses of power , democratic rights  and police violence elsewhere are  so silent.


True Jeremy Corbyn back in October  2017  tweeted, calling on the Spanish government to end the use of force by the police.


But he has largely silent especially after his “socialist” friends  took control of the Spanish Government and carried on the same way as the Peoples Party (the heirs of Franco) in suppressing  the Right of Self determination of the People of Catalonia.


The National tells is…

 Pro-independence political prisoners appeared in Spain’s highest court yesterday, but it was Spanish democracy in the dock for what has been dubbed “the trial of the century”.
Twelve defendants face charges of rebellion, sedition and misuse of public funds – which they all reject – for their part in the 2017 referendum that led to a declaration of Catalan

independence.
Flanked by hundreds of police, pro-indy demonstrators briefly blocked motorways and roads before the trial began at the Supreme Court in Madrid, while others mounted demonstrations in the Catalan capital Barcelona.
Oriol Junqueras, the former Catalan vice president, the parliament’s former speaker Carme Forcadell, other former ministers and grassroots leaders Jordi Sanchez and Jordi Cuixart sat on four benches in the middle of the courtroom, facing a seven-judge panel headed by Supreme Court
magistrate Manuel Marchena.
Joaquim Forn, the former home affairs minister who was in charge of the Catalan police, Mossos d’Esquadra, was one of those looking forward to their day in court.
He tweeted: “After 15 months of preventive prison, the trial begins today. The moment of truth comes. We go with our heads held high, convinced of our innocence and the
legitimacy of our actions.”
Andreu Van Den Eynde, who is representing Junqueras, was first to speak, and argued that the case went “against political dissidence”.
Catalan President Quim Torra followed proceedings from the back of the courtroom where 100 seats were reserved for defendants’ relatives, journalists and members of the public who lined up for hours to get one of the limited spots.
The former Catalan president, representing Junqueras, was first to speak, and argued that the case went “against political dissidence”.
Catalan President Quim Torra followed proceedings from the back of the courtroom where 100 seats were reserved for defendants’ relatives, journalists and members of the public who lined up for hours to get one of the limited spots.
The former Catalan president, Puigdemont, who fled Spain to go into exile in Europe, dubbed the trial “a stress test for the Spanish democracy”.
He told journalists in Berlin: “I trust, however, that the Spanish state will take advantage of this chance to issue the correct sentence, which is absolution.”
Puigdemont avoided extradition to Spain when a German court refused to send him back on charges of rebellion last year.
His former education minister, Professor Clara Ponsati, a St Andrews University academic, challenged a European Arrest Warrant for her in Scotland, but Spain withdrew it before the case was due to be heard.
Those who stayed in Catalonia and showed up in court are on trial now.
Puigdemont’s number two at the time, Junqueras, faces up to 25 years in prison if he is found guilty of rebellion, while others charged with sedition or misuse of public funds could get lower sentences if they are convicted.
Support for the accused has come from around the world.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon wrote on Twitter: “These trials of elected politicians should concern all democrats. The future of Catalonia should be decided through the ballot box, not in the courts. I am sending my best wishes today to the Catalan president and those facing trial. Let’s hope the process is demonstrably fair.”
SNP and Plaid Cymru MPs wore yellow in the House of Commons in solidarity with the Catalans and the SNP’s Ronnie Cowan – a member of the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Catalonia – took part in a protest outside 10 Downing Street.
Organisations including Amnesty International, the World Organisation Against Torture and the American Political Science Association have all criticised the trial.
In the trial itself, Benet Salellas, one of Cuixart’s defence team, was among those lawyers who complained they had not had access to the prosecution evidence.

“We are before an exceptional trial,” he told the judges. “It (self-determination) is a synonym of peace, not of war … self-determination is the formula to avoid conflicts in the world.”

“We are before an exceptional trial,” he told the judges. “It (self-determination) is a synonym of peace, not of war … self-determination is the formula to avoid conflicts in the world.”

If the European Union governments  can follow the US move to recognize Juan Guaido as Venezuela’s interim president , then how can they ignore this abuse of state power and attack on democracy on their own doorstep?
How can politicians like Jeremy Corbyn be so critical of UK abuses in Northern Ireland and current Israeli  abuses in Palestine remain silent, when this is happening in Spain
Can it be that they are so committed to the Union that they are prepared to stand by and let such an abuse of power happen rather than see an Independent Catalonia and a domino effect in which Scotland and Wales follow soon after.