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The CGPJ asks to avoid parliamentary interventions with "disqualifications" that undermine confidence in the Judiciary

The Plenary agrees on a unanimous declaration after eliminating references from the conservative text to Armengol and the Government.

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The CGPJ asks to avoid parliamentary interventions with "disqualifications" that undermine confidence in the Judiciary

The Plenary agrees on a unanimous declaration after eliminating references from the conservative text to Armengol and the Government


The Plenary Session of the General Council of the Judiciary (CGPJ) issued a unanimous statement this Monday urging to ensure that parliamentary interventions do not incur "disqualifications" of judges and magistrates that undermine the confidence of citizens in the Judiciary, in response to the attacks made by deputies on robes last week.

This has been agreed by the 16 members that currently make up the CGPJ, after lowering the initial text proposed by the nine members who, together with the interim president of the governing body of the judges, Vicente Guilarte, form the conservative bloc: José María Macías, José Antonio Ballestero, Juan Manuel Fernández, Juan Martínez Moya, Wenceslao Olea, Gerardo Martínez Tristán, Carmen Llombart, Nuria Abad and María Ángeles Carmona.

According to CGPJ sources consulted by Europa Press, the statement proposed by the conservative members directly urged the president of the Congress of Deputies, Francina Armengol, to avoid "excessive criticism" of parliamentarians towards judges and magistrates, while calling on the Government to "containment", all of this to "not undermine citizen confidence in the Judiciary."

However, in the finally approved declaration both references have been eliminated to point out that "respect for the independence of the Judiciary should be ensured in the course of parliamentary interventions, avoiding disqualifications that could undermine citizens' confidence in the judicial system." .

These nine members considered it necessary for the CGPJ to make an official statement following the accusations launched on January 30 in the Lower House by several deputies during the plenary session in which the current text of the amnesty law proposal was debated and rejected. "before the acquiescence and silence of the president."

Focusing on the statements made by deputies, the Plenary reasons that the fact that "they are especially protected by parliamentary inviolability does not diminish the seriousness of their actions."

"Especially, taking into account that in the social and parliamentary debate on the aforementioned bill, accusations of 'lawfare' are being made against members of the Judiciary," he points out.

For this reason, they reject "with all firmness certain manifestations and behaviors carried out by members of the Legislative Branch", while emphasizing that they will continue to defend "the independence of the Judicial Branch, residing in each and every one of the Spanish judges."

"We reiterate that judicial independence is a key piece of the Rule of Law and its defense is essential within the framework of the values ​​on which the European Union is based and its safeguarding corresponds to all the Powers of the State," maintains the group. vowels.

Furthermore, they emphasize that "institutional respect must govern the relations between all the powers of the State", recalling in this sense that, as the Consultative Council of European Judges has pointed out, "in the face of inappropriate interference, the powers of the State must cooperate with loyalty to restore balance and, with it, society's confidence in the proper functioning of public institutions."

They also remember that, according to the Advisory Council, "the evaluations and criticisms of a State power towards the other powers must be formulated in a climate of mutual respect" and that "there is a clear difference between freedom of expression and legitimate criticism, on the one hand, and the lack of respect and inappropriate pressure towards the Judiciary, on the other hand."

During the parliamentary session on January 30, deputies from Junts, Podemos and Sumar alluded to the judge of the Supreme Court (TS) Manuel Marchena, president of the court that judged and condemned the 'procés'; to the judge of the National Court Manuel García Castellón, who is investigating 'Democratic Tsunami'; and the head of the Investigative Court Number 1 of Barcelona, ​​Joaquín Aguirre, who is investigating the 'Voloh case'.

The Junts spokesperson, Miriam Nogueras, spoke of "prevaricating judges" and mentioned the three robes, while the 'purple' deputy Martina Velarde warned of a "wild judicial offensive" against the future amnesty targeting the "reactionary judicial sector" and , specifically, to García Castellón.

From Sumar, Gerardo Pisarello spoke of "an AN judge close to Aznar who did not see the involvement of María Dolores de Cospedal" in 'Kitchen', and then referred directly to the head of the Central Court of Instruction Number 6.

In their interventions, ERC deputies Pilar Vallugera and EH Bildu Jon Iñárritu did not refer to judges with names and surnames but did refer to the Judiciary. Thus, the Basque politician warned about "dark movements" coming from the judicial sphere.

After that, the Vox deputy María José Rodríguez de Millán asked the president of the Lower House to call Nogueras and Velarde to order, a request that Armengol did not heed, although he recalled that he had asked all the deputies to observe "due decorum".

This is the first statement by the CGPJ Plenary on attacks by politicians on robes, although Guilarte has already expressed himself in several public interventions. The last one was last Wednesday when he responded to the "unacceptable disqualifications" made the previous day in Congress towards judges and magistrates, making an institutional call to "leave alone" the members of the Judiciary.

Until now, the Plenary had only ruled on accusations of 'lawfare' (judicial war) against judges and magistrates. First the Permanent Commission did so, warning that it would remain "vigilant" if parliamentary investigation commissions were finally created to detect these alleged cases and, later, its highest body reacted to reject them and warn the officers that they are not obliged to appear in them.

The Permanent Commission, for its part, issued a unanimous statement on January 19 to express its "resounding rejection" of the criticisms of the third vice president of the Government, Teresa Ribera, of García Castellón, considering that they were "contrary" to the " duty to respect judicial independence", while calling for "institutional responsibility" to "avoid the political use of Justice".

Precisely, another of the issues that the members have debated this Monday has been the composition of the Permanent Commission - executive arm of the CGPJ -, since Guilarte proposed replacing the member Pilar Sepúlveda with Enrique Lucas, both framed in the progressive sector of Council.

However, sources from the governing body of the judges questioned by this news agency indicate that it has not moved forward because, despite having more yeses than noes, it has not achieved the necessary absolute majority.

It should be remembered that Guilarte tweaked the Permanent Commission as soon as he became alternate president of the CGPJ. He kept Sepúlveda and Ballestero, removed Álvaro Cuesta, Martínez Moya, Fernández and Díaz and included Roser Bach, Mar Cabrejas, Llombart and Carmona.