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Catalan separatist "Estelada" flags fly along with tourist merchandise at a shop in Barcelona, December 22, 2017.
The Spanish judge who had Oriol Ciurana and Marta Llorens arrested Wednesday had attempted to question the two twice before, but they reportedly avoided testifying.

Pro-independence Catalan councilors have been arrested for "instigating hate" against the Spanish National Police during October demonstrations in the Catalan city of Reus, just south of Barcelona.

The Spanish judge who had Oriol Ciurana and Marta Llorens - both members of the left-leaning Popular Unity Candidacy, or CUP party - arrested Wednesday had attempted to question the two twice before, but they reportedly avoided testifying.

Ciurana and Llorens are accused of instigating public hate against police officers stationed at a Reus hotel in October. Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy sent thousands of police officers to Catalonia after its Oct. 1 independence referendum to control pro-independence and anti-central government demonstrators.

Police officers stationed at the hotel claimed they felt "vilified" by demonstrators outside of the Reus hotel led by Ciurana and Llorens and eventually had to leave the hotel. In total, seven pro-independence leaders are being questioned on similar charges of instigating police hate.

In late November, the judge questioned pro-independence Reus Mayor Carles Pellicer on similar charges. Pellicier said he was trying to return the city to normality during a climate of "tension" and "anxiety."

Ciurana and Llorens are being called to testify in front of the judge Thursday at 9:00 a.m. local time.

The arrests come days after Spanish Supreme Court Judge Pablo Llarena indicted several pro-independence leaders for rebellion against the Spanish throne after former Catalan officials declared independence in October.

Those charged include Marta Rovira, general secretary of the Republican Left of Catalonia, former Catalan President Artur Mas, Marta Pascal of the Catalan European Democratic Party, Mireia Boya of CUP and Neus Lloveras, president of the Association of Municipalities for Independence.

Llarena made the decision after analyzing a report prepared by the Civil Guard, which allegedly proved that Rovira, Mas and others were the ones who "designed, guided, directed and controlled the implementation of the plans for the creation of a sovereign state and those who mobilized the human and material resources for it."

Other leaders of pro-independence parties, including now-deposed President Carles Puigdemont, face similar charges.