The ruling on Puigdemont and Comin’s seat in the European Parliament will be published on 26 September.

The ruling on Puigdemont and Comin’s seat in the European Parliament will be published on 26 September.

The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) will issue its ruling on the European Chamber’s refusal to recognize the headquarters of Carles Puigdemont and Toni Comín in 2019 on September 26. In particular, the European Court will have to decide whether to choose to follow the criteria of the ruling on the immunity of Junqueras and the Court’s prosecutor, which considers that forcing MEPs to swear an oath to the Spanish Constitution is contrary to European legislation and the principle of universal suffrage; or if on the contrary it upholds the decision of the president at the time, Antonio Tajanito deprive them of the seat.

The ruling is of great importance, as the European Parliament is expected to deny Comín the seat on the grounds that his name was excluded from the list of MEPs sent by the Spanish electoral authority, which includes only those who have sworn to the constitution in person in Madrid.

Case Background

Puigdemont and Comín were part of the Junts list, which won the May 2019 European elections in Catalonia, taking two seats. The Joint Electoral Commission included them in the list of elected candidates, but not in the final list, as they are required to comply with the Spanish constitution. Nor was Oriol Junqueras, who was not allowed out of prison by the Supreme Court.

In this way, the then-president of the European Chamber, Antonio Tajani, did not recognize them as MEPs. Puigdemont and Comin finally took office in December 2019, when the then-president, David SasolThey were recognised after the ruling on Junqueras’ immunity, which stated that the status of a member of the European Parliament was only obtained through election at the ballot box. Despite finally getting the seat, Puigdemont and Comin have filed a lawsuit against the European Chamber for Tajani’s refusal to recognise them from the start – a case that will be judged on 26 September.

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The first-instance ruling in the case, issued by the General Court of the European Union (CJEU), upheld Tajani’s decision. The European Parliament’s legal services also said during the hearing that Sassoli had recognised the MEPs of Puigdemont and Comin “possibly illegally” because the European Chamber had never received notification of their election in the Spanish state. But the pro-independence leaders have appealed the decision to the European Court of Justice, which will now have to rule after the Advocate General ratifies it. The Advocate General’s opinion is not binding, although the ECJ usually follows his arguments before making a final ruling.

Now, the ruling will not only allow to determine whether or not the seats of Puigdemont and Comin were properly awarded in the last legislature, but it will also allow to clarify Comin’s status in this state. Of course, if a ruling is in his favor, and if the European Chamber does not recognize it until after the ruling is published, Comin will miss the first two full sessions of the legislature.

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