Belgian judge grants conditional freedom to exiled Catalonia leaders

A Belgian judge released ousted Catalan regional president Carles Puigdemont and four separatist allies from custody on Sunday, hours after they turned themselves in to face possible extradition to Spain for illegally plotting to break away from Spain. The secessionist politicians fled Spain and sought shelter in Belgium on Monday after Spain’s central government removed Puigdemont and his regional government after regional lawmakers declared independence after an illegal referendum. On Friday, the Spanish government issued European arrest warrants against the separatist leaders for rebellion, sedition, and embezzlement of public funds, crimes punishable with up to 30 years in prison. Puigdemont said from exile that he would not receive a fair trial in Spain.

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