Catalonia’s ex-President Carles Puigdemont arrived in Denmark on Monday, prompting Spain’s state prosecutor to demand the EU arrest warrant for the embattled former lawmaker be renewed.
Puigdemont landed in Copenhagen from Belgium, where he had been living in exile with several ministers since declaring Catalan independence in October, sparking a constitutional crisis.
Although a referendum on independence from Madrid ended in a victory for the secessionist camp, the vote has been called into question over its validity and its low turnout. The government of Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy sacked Catalonia’s leadership and called fresh elections, prompting Puigdemont’s flight to Brussels.
In Spain, Pugidemont is facing charges of rebellion and sedition, but a judge withdrew the international arrest warrant against him in December, partly because the former president was expected to return to Catalonia to have his day in court.
The judge is not obliged to grant the prosecutor’s request that the EU warrant be reinstated.
Puigdemont was in Copenhagen for a conference, the first time he has left Belgium since fleeing there.
The speaker of Catalonia’s parliament is due to announce his candidate for the region’s presidency on Monday after pro-independence parties received a majority of votes in December elections.
Puigdemont has expressed a wish to govern from exile, which according to Prime Minister Rajoy is illegal.
Danish authorities have not yet said whether they plan to turn Puigdemont over to Spanish officials.