A legal challenge has moved forward following the former Mayor of Barcelona’s decision to support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel, JNS reported on Tuesday.

In February, then-Barcelona Mayor Ada Colau caused an uproar after she announced she is suspending all of the city’s ties with Israel, citing what she called “the repeated violations of human rights of the Palestinian population and non-compliance with United Nations resolutions.”

She added that Barcelona will maintain relations with “Israeli and Palestinian entities that continue to work for peace and against apartheid.”

Within days of that announcement, Action and Communication on the Middle East (ACOM) had filed a lawsuit in Barcelona, accusing Colau of “the alleged crimes of administrative perversion of justice and incitement to hatred” as well as citing articles in Spain’s Criminal Code requiring a private prosecution.

That suit has now been accepted by the court, prompting the opening of the demanded investigation, according to JNS.

ACOM said in a statement that it was committed “to defend our democracy” and vowed “to unmask in all sectors, from the legal to the media, all actions that are taken by the antisemites who, in their false solidarity with the Palestinian people, intend to curtail the freedoms of Jews in Spain.”

Colau was unseated in municipal elections last month, after she was defeated by Xavier Trias, the right-wing candidate from the Junts party.

The Spanish government had criticized Colau’s decision to boycott Israel, calling it a "unilateral move" that would not bring "anything good".

In addition, a petition with more than 15,000 signatures called on the Barcelona City Council to vote to restore the “twin city” relationship with Tel Aviv.

Madrid’s mayor, José Luís Martínez-Almeida, has offered to step up as a replacement for Barcelona.