The day before the declaration of independence, Puigdemont met with an ally of Putin, who proposed 10,000 troops to fight in Catalonia. In return, he wanted to transform the region into a new Switzerland.
Former Catalan government leader Carles Puigdemont met at his official residence with a representative of Vladimir Putin, Nikolai Sadovnikov, a day before unilaterally declaring Catalonia’s independence in October 2017, El Period reported. The former president’s office admitted the existence of the meeting, but said it had rejected Russia’s offer as “inconvenient and not very credible”.
Russia proposed to hand over 10,000 Russian soldiers who would support the Catalan independence cause, also forgiving its public debt. In return, Catalonia would have to adopt permissive legislation regarding cryptocurrencies, which would, according to the Kremlin version, transform the region into a new Switzerland.
It was Víctor Terradellas, former leader of international relations in the Catalan Convergència party, who organized the meeting. The objective was to create a platform for Catalonia to finance the independence process, as well as a way to guarantee the region’s economic stability.
According to El Mundo, the Kremlin’s objective was to destabilize the European Union, as well as gain an ally in Western Europe. For their part, the Catalans looked for foreign support and also a way to get around financial problems – but they would be far from accepting the support of 10,000 Russian soldiers.
Spanish justice is investigating this connection between Puigdemont and Russia. One of the investigating judges in charge of the case believes that “Russia would have offered support to Carles Puigdemont to the point of having deployed 10,000 soldiers in Catalonia”. “If [the former Catalan leader] accepted, the events would probably have been tragic and would have triggered an armed conflict with the State with an uncertain number of fatalities”, considers the magistrate.
Source: With Agences