Spain: Deportation Case Casts Light on Push for Catalan Independence

Article by Time World. May 17, 2013.  Read the full article here.

Is he a spy or a sovereigntist? At approximately 7 p.m., Barcelona police arrested a Moroccan-born man named Noureddine Ziani and informed him that he was being deported from Spain, the country where he has legally lived and worked for the past 14 years. Citing a “threat to national security,” Spain’s Center for National Intelligence (CNI) made the request for expulsion on May 3; it was approved earlier today by the Spanish Interior Ministry. The CNI report specifies that Ziani has both collaborated with the intelligence service of a foreign government and has links to Islamist extremists. But Ziani’s supporters, who learned of his troubles earlier this week, suspect that the real motivation for his deportation lies a lot closer to home: for the past year, the 45-year-old businessman and religious leader has worked as liaison to the Muslim community for an organization that promotes independence for the semiautonomous region of Catalonia from Spain.

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