Spain withdraws arrest warrant for St Andrews academic

The extradition requests were for six Catalan separatist politicians, including ex-regional president Carles Puigdemont, wanted on rebellion charges.

The former Catalan president will move from Germany, back to Belgium, shortly.

The six politicians were wanted in connection with the Catalan regional government's unauthorised referendum previous year, in which the public voted on independence from Spain, and the subsequent unilateral declaration of independence.

But it said that the Spanish charge of rebellion is not recognised in Germany and that related German statutes such as that against treason did not apply, because Mr Puigdemont's actions "did not rise to this kind of violence".

A German court ruled a week ago that Puigdemont could be extradited to Spain to face a separate charge for misuse of public funds.

Prof Clara Ponsati was arrested by Scottish police in March.

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Aamer Anwar told Reuters: "The question that arises is whether the Spanish government are willing to allow Mr Puigdemont to simply return back to Catalonia and declare independence".

It is the second time Spain has revoked the arrest warrant for Mr Puigdemont since he went into self-exile when his independence bid for Catalonia collapsed previous year.

Spanish arrest warrants for all six remain open, however, meaning they will be detained should they attempt to re-enter the country. In his ruling, Judge Llarena criticised...

The decision meant that if he were to be extradited, Spain would only be able to try him on charges approved in the extradition order, and not rebellion.

Spanish authorities ordered Puigdemont's extradition due to his role over last year's unauthorized independence referendum in Catalonia and the regional parliament's subsequent declaration of independence from Spain.

New Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez has met Mr Puigdemont's successor - fervent separatist Quim Torra - in a thawing of relations between Madrid and Barcelona.

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