A SCOTS MP has condemned the UK Government’s silence over human rights abuses in Catalonia, which she said was being used to win Spain’s support in Brexit negotiations.

Marion Fellows, the SNP member for Motherwell and Wishaw, was speaking during Foreign Office questions in the Commons, as the trial of pro-independence leaders continued in Madrid.

She asked: “Is it the case that the UK Government isn’t seeking to uphold self-determination for Catalonia because it needs Spain’s support in Brexit negotiations?”

Foreign Office Minister, Alan Duncan, replied: “We uphold [the rule of law] here with Scotland with Spain on Catalonia. Certain accusations that somehow they have political prisoners are absurd.”

Catalan Government ministers, the Parliament’s speaker and two grassroots activists are on trial over the October 2017 indyref. Others are in exile across Europe.

“The UK Government is so desperate, it is allowing democracy in Catalonia to be trampled and even denying the existence of political prisoners to gain Spain’s support in Brexit negotiations,” said Fellows.

“Far from being the major global player Brexiteers imagined, the UK is becoming an irrelevance on the world stage. It is everyone’s responsibility to uphold human rights. Denying the existence of political prisoners is detached from reality.

“In Catalonia, as in Scotland, the people are sovereign and the people alone possess the right to determine their futures. Catalonia voted for a Parliament that voted to hold a referendum.

“Madrid and the rest of Europe cannot continue to ignore democracy and should intervene to uphold democracy ... the answer that it is an internal matter for Spain is simply not good enough and shows just how cowardly they are.”

Meanwhile, Catalonia’s Supreme Court is to investigate President Quim Torra for disobedience over his refusal to obey an electoral board order to remove yellow ribbons from public buildings. They have become synonymous with the independence cause and the political prisoners.

The court said Torra had ignored the order, “consciously and deliberately”.