Spanish deputies and senators declaration


Today, 22 March 2017, the Congress of Deputies of the Kingdom of Spain has made a public declaration signed by 74 deputies and 14 senators in relation to the developments in Alsasua and its subsequent judicial treatment. Below we present the contents of that statement and its signatories.

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In the wake of the events last 15 October, which occurred in the morning in a bar in the town of Alsasua, nine young people from the town have been charged with acts of terrorism and three of them remained imprisoned provisionally. Under a commitment to coexistence, freedom, justice and respect for human rights and the principles of Rule of Law, the signatories below show our concern with the development of the events surrounding this case.

We consider it essential that the society, their institutional representatives, the media and the judicial system observe the criteria of caution, equanimity and proportionality. In this regard, we must respect the presumption of innocence and therefore we show our concern for the publication of the identities of the young men – two of them minors – and for the way in which the arrests were made, without subpoena, in public places and times despite having already presented themselves on a voluntary basis to testify. They have been denied the right to natural justiceand, as has been pointed out by reputed jurists, the procedural guarantees (right to defence, individualization of the responsibilities, nonextensive interpretations, proportionality, non-arbitrariness…) have been called into question.

In addition, we show our concern for the judicial classification of the events as a terrorism crime. The lack of proportionality and excessive interpretation violates the freedoms, procedural guarantees and legal security of all the people we must protect. In this regard we wish to stress that the first police reports, written up by the Provincial Police and the Civil Guard, contradict and reject the classification of the facts as a terrorism crime.

The definition of a terrorism crime in the Penal Codehas been repeatedly questioned by different UN Human Rights Rapporteurs. Specifically, the definition in effect, as a result of the reform implemented by Organic Law 2/2015, which was basedon its statement of motives for combating jihadist terrorism, was recently (23-02-2015) questioned by five Human Rights Rapporteurs from the UN, who considered that “as it is written, the anti-terrorist law could criminalize conduct that would not constitute terrorism and could result in other restrictions disproportionate to the exercise of freedom of expression.” The case of Alsasua is a clear example of this.

If we take into account the penal consequences deriving from classifying a crime as an act of terrorism, the deprivation of liberty between 10 and 15 years, equivalent to that of a crime of homicide, the acts are not proportionate to the degree of severity of the medical injuries that occurred.We must point out the irreparable damage that would result in the fulfilment of disproportionate penalties for the future of these young people. We must emphasize the exceptionally precautionary nature that provisional detention is. Its use is concerning for young people who have continually demonstrated their willingness to appear before the courts. We understand the feelings of helplessness and abandonment the families have shown under such charges.

However, during the course of these weeks we have witnessed an over exaggerated media that has distorted the image of this Navarre municipality, damaging it greatly and doing a disservice to its coexistence.

Therefore, we call for the principles of proportionality, justice and equity to prevail, and we require the elimination of the penal classification as a terrorism crime, the return of jurisdiction to the Examining Magistrate’s court No. 3 of Pamplona, and the subsequent release of the three young people.

At the same time, we ask the competent authorities (General Prosecutor, Spanish National Court and Provincial Court of Navarre) to reconsider their actions in the above-mentioned sense and that the public administrations, social media and political agents and society in general collaborate in the pursuit of these requests.

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Read the signatories


1. Joseba Agirretxea Urresti (Deputy. PNV)
2. Nagua Alba (Deputy. Podemos)
3. Fèlix Alonso (Deputy. IU)
4. VanesaAngustia Gómez (Senator. En Marea)
5. Teresa ArévaloCaraballo (Deputy. Podemos)
6. Miguel José AubàFleix (Senator. ERC)
7. JoaquimAyatsiBartrina (Senator. ERC)
8. Anna AzamarCapdevila (Senator. ERC)
9. Jorge Luis Bail. (Deputy. Podemos)
10. Angela Ballester (Deputy. Podemos)
11. Joan BalovíiRoda (Deputy. Compromis)
12. IñigoBarandiaran Benito (Deputy. PNV)
13. EnricBatalleri Ruiz (Deputy. Compromis)
14. Marian Beitialarrangoitia (Deputy. EH Bildu)
15. FerranBelAccenci (Deputy. PDeCAT)
16. Ione BelarraUrteaga (Deputy. Podemos)
17. Iñaki Bernal (Senator. IU)
18. Carolina Bescansa (Deputy. Podemos)
19. Miguel Bustamante (Deputy. IU)
20. Pablo Bustinduy (Deputy. Podemos)
21. CarlesCampuzanoCanadés (Deputy. PDeCAT)
22. Ignasi Candela Serna (Deputy. Compromis)
23. Joan CapdevilaiEsteve (Deputy. ERC)
24. Ester CapellaiFarré (Deputy. ERC)
25. MirellaCortèsGès (Senator. ERC)
26. Jose David Carracedo Verde (Deputy. Podemos)
27. Sofia Castañón (Deputy. Podemos)
28. Laura Castel Fort (Senator. ERC)
29. Xavier CastellanaGamisans (Senator. ERC)
30. Lourdes CiuróBuldó (Deputy. PDeCAT)
31. Mae de la Concha Gª-Mauriño (Deputy. Podemos)
32. JordiMartíDeulofeu (Senator. ERC)
33. Yolanda Díaz Pérez (Deputy. En Marea)
34. Gloria Elizo. (Vicepresidentatercera del Congreso). (Deputy. Podemos)
35. Francesc Xavier EritjaCiuró (Deputy. ERC)
36. IñigoErrejón (Deputy. Podemos)
37. Aitor Esteban Bravo (Deputy. PNV)
38. Miquel Angel Estradé Palau (Senator. ERC)
39. Sonia FarréFidalgo (Deputy. Podemos)
40. Alexandra Fernández (Deputy. En Marea)
41. Mar GarcíaPuig (Deputy. Podemos)
42. Eva GarcíaSempere (Deputy. IU)
43. Alberto Garzón (Deputy. IU)
44. Antonio Gómez-Reino Varela (Deputy. En Marea)
45. Segundo González García (Deputy. Podemos)
46. Francesch Homs iMolist (Deputy. PDeCAT)
47. AuxiliadoraHonoratoChulián (Deputy. Podemos)
48. Pablo Iglesias (Deputy. Podemos)
49. Jon Iñarritu (Senator. EH Bildu)
50. Teresa JordàiRoura (Deputy. ERC)
51. MikelLegardaUriarte (Deputy. PNV)
52. JuantxoLópez de Uralde (Deputy. Podemos)
53. Ana Marcello (Deputy. Podemos)
54. Lucia Martin González (Deputy. Podemos)
55. Rosa Martínez Rodríguez. (Deputy. Podemos)
56. Oskar Matute (Deputy. EH Bildu)
57. Eduardo Maura. (Deputy. Podemos)
58. Joan Mena (Deputy. IU)
59. SergiMiquelValentí (Deputy. PDeCAT)
60. Alberto Montero (Deputy. Podemos)
61. Irene Montero Gil (Deputy. Podemos)
62. JaumeMoyaiMatas (Deputy. Podemos)
63. Miriam NoguerasCamero (Deputy. PDeCAT)
64. Joan Olòriz Serra (Deputy. ERC)
65. Elisenda Pérez Esteve (Senator. ERC)
66. BernatPicornellGrenzner (Senator. ERC)
67. María Pita Cárdenas (Deputy. Podemos)
68. AntoniPostiusTerrado (Deputy. PDeCAT)
69. Alberto Rodríguez (Deputy. Podemos)
70. Ángela Rodríguez Martínez (Deputy. En Marea)
71. JosepRufàGràcia (Senator. ERC)
72. Gabriel Rufián Romero (Deputy. ERC)
73. IdoiaSagastizabalUnzetabarrenetxea (Deputy. PNV)
74. Isabel Salud (Deputy. Podemos)
75. JordiSalvador iDuch (Deputy. ERC)
76. Tania Sánchez (Deputy. Podemos)
77. Eduardo Santos Itoiz (Deputy. Podemos)
78. Ricardo Sixto (Deputy. IU)
79. Marta SorlíFresquet (Deputy. Compromis)
80. Ana MaríaSurraSpadea (Deputy. ERC)
81. Joan Tardài Coma. (Deputy. ERC)
82. Ana Terrón (Deputy. Podemos)
83. Carmen Valido Pérez (Deputy. Podemos)
84. Noelia Vera Ruiz-Herrera (Deputy. Podemos)
85. Raimundo Viejo Viñas (Deputy. Podemos)
86. Miguel Vila Gómez (Deputy. Podemos)
87. JordiXuclà Costa (Deputy. PDeCAT)
88. Juan Pedro Yllanes (Deputy. Podemos)

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Declaration of members of the European Parliament


The 29th June 2017 52 members of the European Parliament, from 15 countries and 5 political parties, signed a declaration where they request that the principles of proportionality, justice, and equity prevail in this case. Also, they asked for the elimination of the penal definition of terrorism for these events and the return of the investigation to the Court of first instance nº 3 of Pamplona.

Read the declaration


Introduction
On the night of the 15th October, during the annual fair of Alsasua, nine youths between the ages of 19 and 24 were arrested as alleged attackers of two police officers who were out of duty. This happened after a fight in a bar in which one of these police officers suffered an ankle fracture. The investigation of the events initially corresponded to de Provincial Court of Navarre but the National High Court (in Madrid and competent for terrorism and other especially grave crimes) described the events as terrorism and took over the investigation. Of those arrested, seven were imprisoned. Three of them are currently still in prison, 400km away from their homes and in a special imprisonment regime known as FIES, in which their rights are significantly restricted.

It must be noted that:

The Provincial Court of Navarre in its act of the 23rd March 2017 estimates that there are no “indications of committing an alleged terrorist crime” and considers that the cause must be opened in an ordinary Court.”

The Parliament of Navarre passed a declaration on the 21st November 2016 stating, “The Parliament of Navarre, respecting judicial decision, shows its disagreement with the criminal category of terrorism for the events being investigated, which could entail disproportionate sentences for the defendants. For this reason, the Parliament of Navarre requests the Central Court nº 3 of the National High Court, as well as the Provincial Court of Navarre and the State’s Prosecutor to reconsider the case, in order to return the jurisdiction to Court of first instance nº 3 of Pamplona – Iruñea. We consider this Court to be competent to continue investigating these events.”

International organizations like the United Nations have repeatedly questioned the different definitions and the excessive scope of the concept of terrorism used by the Spanish penal system. For example, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and Terrorism, Martin Scheinin and the Human Rights Committee of the United Nations in 2008. The modification in the definition of the crime of terrorism, through Organic Law 2/2015 (30th March 2015) has been criticised by five different United Nations Special Rapporteurs. The Parliament of Navarre demanded in its resolution of the 16th February 2017 the modification of this definition of terrorism in the Spanish Criminal Code.

194 jurists and professors have signed a manifesto analysing the case from a juristic perspective and have concluded that these events must not be defined as terrorism and an Ordinary Court must investigate this cause.

On the 22nd March 2017, 74 members of the Spanish Parliament and 14 members of the Senate signed a declaration in which they also request these events to not be defined as terrorism and to return the cause to an Ordinary Court in Navarre. In addition, 83 Mayors of the Basque Country, including the Mayors of the four Basque capitals (San Sebastian, Bilbao, Vitoria and Pamplona) supported the same declaration.

In the Spanish State, there are many examples of attacks on police officers in similar situations that were judged in ordinary courts and in accordance to the ordinary penal code, not as terrorism. Oppositely, in this case the sentences requested are completely disproportionate compared to the gravity of the injuries.

Declaration

“In relation to the events taking place on the night of the 15th October during the fair of Alsasua, after which 9 youths between 19 and 24 years old were arrested as alleged attackers of two off-duty police officers after a fight in a bar:

We request that the principles of proportionality, justice, and equity prevail. Therefore, we request the elimination of the penal definition of terrorism for these events and the return of the investigation to the Court of first instance nº 3 of Pamplona for the 9 detainees to be judged there.”

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Read the signatories


Marina ALBIOL GUZMAN (GUE/NGL) España
Martina ANDERSON (GUE/NGL) Irlanda
Xabier BENITO ZILUAGA (GUE/NGL) Euskal Herria
Izaskun BILBAO BARANDIKA (ALDE) Euskal Herria
Malin BJORK (GUE/NGL) Suecia
José BOVÉ (GREENS/EFA) Francia
Lynn BOYLAN (GUE/NGL) Irlanda
Matt CARTHY (GUE/NGL) Irlanda
Nikolaos CHOUNTIS (GUE/NGL) Grecia
Javier COUSO PERMUY (GUE/NGL) España
Karima DELLI (GREENS/EFA) Francia
Fabio DE MASI (GUE/NGL) Alemania
Mark DEMESMAEKER (ECR) Flandria
Stefan ECK (GUE/NGL) Alemania
Cornelia ERNST (GUE/NGL) Alemania
Jill EVANS (GREENS/EFA) Gales
Ana GOMES (S & D) Portugal
Eleonora FORENZA (GUE/NGL) Italia
Tania GONZÁLEZ PEÑAS (GUE/NGL) España
Maria HEUBUCH (GREENS/EFA) Alemania
Eva JOLY (GREENS/EFA) Francia
Josu JUARISTI ABAUNZ (GUE/NGL) Euskal Herria
Rina Ronja KARI (GUE/NGL) Dinamarca
Katerina KONECNA (GUE/NGL) Republica Checa
Stelios KOULOGLOU (GUE/NGL) Grecia
Kostadinka KUNEVA (GUE/NGL) Grecia
Merja KYLLÖNEN (GUE/NGL) Finlandia
Philippe LAMBERTS (GREENS/EFA) Belgica
Paloma LOPEZ BERMEJO (GUE/NGL) España
Sabine LÖSING (GUE/NGL) Alemania
Curzio MALTESE (GUE/NGL) Italia
Florent MARCELLESI (GREENS/EFA) España
Marisa MATIAS (GUE/NGL) Portugal
Martina MICHELS (GUE/NGL) Alemania
Liadh NÍ RIADA (GUE/NGL) Irlanda
Dimitrios PAPADIMOULIS (GUE/NGL) Grecia
Joao PIMENTA LOPES (GUE/NGL) Portugal
Lola SANCHEZ CALDENTEY (GUE/NGL) España
Lidia SENRA RODRÍGUEZ (GUE/NGL) Galicia
Jordi SOLÉ FERRANDO (GREENS/EFA) Cataluña
Barbara SPINELLI (GUE/NGL) Italia
Bart STAES (GREENS/EFA) Flandria
Neoklis SYLIKIOTIS (GUE/NGL) Chipre
Josep-Maria TERRICABRAS NOGUERAS (GREENS/EFA) Cataluña
Estefanía TORRES MARTINEZ (GUE/NGL) España
Ramon TREMOSA i BALCELLS (ALDE) Cataluña
Miguel URBAN CRESPO (GUE/NGL) España
Ernest URTASUN DOMÈNECH (GREENS/EFA) Cataluña
Angela VALLINA DE LA NOVAL (GUE/NGL) España
Marie-Christine VERGIAT (GUE/NGL) Francia
Tatjana ZDANOKA (GREENS/EFA) Letonia
Gabriele ZIMMER (GUE/NGL) Alemania

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They have also sent a letter to Jean-Claude Juncker, president of the European Comission, request him the intervention to defend the rights of all European citizens Read here the letter.

Institutional declarations

I. INSTITUTIONAL DECLARATION OF THE PARLIAMENT OF NAVARRE

The Board of Spokespersons of the Parliament of Navarre has approved an institutional declaration by which the parliament of Navarre expresses its commitment for peace and coexistence in Altsasu / Alsasua and throughout Navarre presented by the G.P. Geroa Bai, G.P. EH Bildu Nafarroa, G.P. We-Ahal Dugu and A.P.F. of Izquierda-Ezkerra. They voted in favor of the statement by Geroa Bai, EH Bildu Nafarroa, Podemos-Ahal Dugu e Izquierda-Ezkerra.

Point 1 of the statement was adopted unanimously. UPN and PSN have voted against points 2, 3, 5, 6 and 7, and have abstained in point 4. The PPN has voted against points 2 to 7. The document states the following:

  1.  The Parliament of Navarre expresses its commitment to peace and coexistence in Altsasu/Alsasua and in all of Navarre.
  2. The Parliament of Navarre, respecting the judicial decisions, expresses its disagreement with the criminal status of the investigated incidents as an act of terrorism, which can carry a disproportionate sentence for the accused young adults. Accordingly, the Parliament of Navarre requests that the Central Examining Court no. 3 of the National Court of Spain, the Provincial Court of Navarre, and the Office of the Public Prosecutor reexamine the case so as to return jurisdiction to the Examining Court no. 3 of Pamplona-Iruñea, deemed competent by us to continue with the examination of the aforementioned incidents.
  3. The Parliament of Navarre expresses its disagreement with the arrests and the precautionary measures used, such as the incarceration of seven young adults from Altsasu/Alsasua, considering that it is a disproportionate, unjustified, and unnecessary measure to the development of the investigation, particularly when some of the young adults in question voluntarily appeared in court and they are not flight risks, and therefore calls for their immediate release.
  4. The Parliament of Navarre displays its outright rejection of the distorted image of the municipality of Altsasu/Alsasua that has been changed from what is the reality of the socially plural locality that is accustomed to coexistence among different people. In this regard, we value the conduct exemplified by the citizens in comparison with the facts.
  5. The Parliament of Navarre supports the silent demonstration held in Altsasu/Alsasua by the Town Council on Saturday, 26 November, with the slogan “Altsasu.”
  6. The Parliament of Navarre requests that the Ombudsperson for Children adopt the adequate and necessary measures so as to insure the rights of the minors involved in these proceedings are respected.
  7. The Parliament of Navarre agrees to forward a copy of the Institutional Declaration to the Town Council of Altsasu/Alsasua, to the Central Examining Court no. 3 of the National Court of Spain, to the Provincial Court of Navarre, to the Office of the Public Prosecutor, and to the Ombudsperson for Children.

II. INSTITUTIONAL DECLARATION OF THE TOWN COUNCIL OF ALSASUA

The Town Council of Altsasu/Alsasua, gathered in a plenary session on 16 November 2016, agrees to the following INSTITUTIONAL DECLARATION.

  1. We would like to express and adopt as our own the feelings of the families of the detained persons on Monday, 14 November, who feel defenceless, helpless, and worried for the future of their children in light of the exaggeration of the facts and before the possibility of disproportionate sentences with the incidents classified as an act of terrorism by National Court of Spain.
  2. Considering the above, we request protection of all institutions (executive as well as legislative and judicial) of Navarre so that these facts are heard in the Examining Court no. 3 of Pamplona, where the investigation began and where the report of the Regional Police is featured, who was originally in charge and who we consider competent in this matter.
  3. The Town Hall of Altsasu/Alsasua, still respecting the judicial decisions, expresses its disagreement with the criminal status of the facts in question as an act of terrorism, as well as with the arrests and the cautionary measures practiced, which are considered unnecessary.
  4. Likewise, we would like to express our solidarity with all those who have been affected by incidents that, as we understand, should have never happened, and by extension we would like to thank the town of Alsasua for their conduct in the face of these incidents.
  5. The Town Hall of Altsasu/Alsasua displays its commitment to peace and coexistence in our municipality, intensifying the dialogue and accountability among all in order to move forward with said coexistence.
  6. The Town Hall of Altsasu/Alsasua firmly rejects the image of our municipality that has been spread, which has nothing to do with reality, as well as the private information of the youth and minors that appears in such means.
  7. The Town Hall of Altsasu/Alsasua will stage a demonstration calling all citizens that will take place Saturday, 26 November at 13:00 under the slogan: “ALTSASU”.