Spain News: Saturday, February 28th, 2015
EDITORIAL: Most Spaniards rarely stop to think about how few people really control the drum beat Spanish society marches to or what a fundamental shift Podemos would represent for their future.
IN-DEPTH: Gibraltar’s Chief Minister Fabian Picardo spoke to The Spain Report about the current Gibraltar–Spain impasse after giving his speech at the Palace Hotel in Madrid.
NEWS: The police operation in six Spanish regions continues this morning.
NEWS: Judge Vidal said on Thursday night that he intended to appeal the decision by Spain’s top judicial council and that he would continue to work for: “the Catalan people’s right to decide”.
NEWS: The Spanish government and the Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE) cross angry comments after former Prime Minister José Luis Rodriguez Zapatero visits Cuba to meet Raúl Castro.
NEWS: The judgement comes five months after Artur Mas signed a regional law authorising the ballot and says regional governments must respect the sovereignty of the Spanish people.
NEWS: The Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE) u-turns on recent statements made by senior leaders concerning the resignation of socialist politicians if they are suspected of corruption crimes.
NEWS: The judge investigating the Bankia IPO has ordered the group to pay the €800m civil liability bond together within one month; their assets will be seized if they do not pay.
NEWS: Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE) leader Pedro Sánchez sacks leader of Madrid Socialist Party (PSM) Tomás Gómez and appoints technocrats to manage socialist affairs in the Spanish capital.
NEWS: Today’s arrests are part of the second phase of an operation which began last April, as part of an investigation looking into the fraudulent appropriation of up to €3 billion.
NEWS: The former chairman of Santander, Emilio Botín, and Formula 1 driver Fernando Alonso are among the Spaniards named in the Swiss Leaks documents.
NEWS: Pablo Iglesias’s party is placed first for the third time in four months; Pedro Sánchez’s Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE) has lost almost ten percentage points of support in two months.
NEWS: Podemos’s rise up the polls has been driven by an anti-establishment, anti-corruption message; Popular Party and Spanish Socialist Party issue rapid attacks in response to the news.
NEWS: 3,000 to 4,000 Spanish soldiers will form the core of the Atlantic alliance’s joint task force, formed in response to Russian aggression in Ukraine and the annexation of Crimea.
NEWS: Spanish pollsters are finding it difficult to estimate the real share of vote Podemos might win at the next general election, given the scarcity of real election results for the party.
NEWS: Spain’s Foreign Minister said “it was fine” for Fabian Picardo to speak in Madrid: “as long as no one forces me to listen”. The Chief Minister was introduced by the British Ambassador.
NEWS: The Secretary General of the Spanish Socialist Party signed the agreement with the Spanish Prime Minister despite his party’s “red line” stance against revisable whole-life prison sentences.
NEWS: Terminally-ill patients are treated in casualty departments, junior doctors go untutored by non-existent casualty consultants and badly-designed software makes their job more difficult.
NEWS: Mr. Iglesias said Spain needed its dreamers and that Mr. Tsipras’s Greek government had “done more in six days than many in years”; Mr. Rajoy said Podemos were “a bunch of sad sacks”.
NEWS: 36-year-old Corporal Francisco Javier Soria Toledo was killed after Hezbollah fired rockets from Lebanon into Israel and Israeli forces retaliated.
NEWS: A Greek F16 fighter aircraft crashed at the Los Llanos air base in Albacete, central Spain, at lunchtime (3:16 p.m.) on Monday, destroying AMX, Alfa Jet and Mirage fighters on the ground.
NEWS: Announcement made after Greek results published; Mrs. Díaz is three months pregnant.
NEWS: Mr. Rajoy and Mr. Sánchez did not make any comment on Sunday evening. Podemos leader Pablo Iglesias said Greeks would now have “a real prime minister, not a Merkel delegate”.
NEWS: Four arrested three weeks after Spain raised its terror threat level following Paris attacks.
NEWS: 433,900 jobs were created in Spain in 2014, mostly in the private sector, but with increasing numbers of part-time workers.
NEWS: Mr. Bárcenas left Soto del Real prison in Madrid tonight after paying the €200,000 bail set by the High Court, and must appear before the judge three times a week.
NEWS: Opposition parties and criminal law professors criticise the PP’s use of its absolute majority in Congress to push through the criminal code reform and introduce whole-life sentences.
NEWS: The Catalan First Minister and the leader of Republican Catalan Left (ERC) announced early regional elections would be held in 2015, following weeks of doubt over electoral list formats.
NEWS: The unscheduled visit comes days after Economy Minister Luis De Guindos denied the Greek elections were relevant to Spain and or that the election campaign was already underway.
NEWS: Spanish media sites published the new Charlie Hebdo front page cartoon with Mohammed holding a “Je Suis Charlie” sign. US and British media have been criticised in Spain for not doing so.
NEWS: Pablo Iglesias’s party polls in first place in the El País poll for the second time in three months, whilst Mariano Rajoy and his Popular Party are stuck in third place and trending downwards.
NEWS: A central Madrid mosque was defaced with anti-Muslim slogans this morning. 1.7 million Muslims, around 3.6% of the population, live in Spain.
NEWS: The day after the attack on Charlie Hebdo in Paris, Spanish satirist Facu Díaz is ordered to court under glorification of terrorism laws to answer questions on the “mocking tone” of a sketch.
NEWS: The Prime Minister and Home Secretary insist there is no specific additional threat to Spain.
NEWS: Mariano Rajoy tweets his “condolences and solidarity with the French people”.
NEWS: In incendiary comments, Juan Carlos Monedero said he sees parallels with Hitler and appeasement in 1938, and warned Spain has more powerful negotiation options than a debt haircut.
NEWS: Leonard Hardy and his wife Donna Hardy (formerly Maguire) were arrested in Lanzarote (Canary Islands). Spanish police say the operation is not related to financing terror activities.
NEWS: Atocha train station in central Madrid is closed and a bomb disposal operation underway after a man with a rucksack on a train began shouting he wanted to commit suicide.
NEWS: The decision, announced by Uber Spain CEO Carles Lloret, comes despite an earlier statement that operations would continue, and two weeks after the closure of Google News in Spain.
NEWS: After Greek election announcement, Pablo Iglesias writes that: “the consensuses of 40 years of financial domination are exploding into the air. The elites and their parties are worried”.
NEWS: The leader of Podemos, Pablo Iglesias, tweeted his joy at the news of a snap general election in Greece, following months of close contact between the two southern-European parties.
NEWS: The two regions accuse Madrid of: “unilaterally breaking the basic political consensuses reached three decades ago” and say they will work together against the centralist challenge.
NEWS: The Spanish Prime Minister said he did not plan to call an early general election, set for the end of 2015; opposition parties unanimously criticised Mr. Rajoy’s optimism.
NEWS: His Majesty said it “hurts and worries” him that the unresolved situation in Catalonia might be the cause of “emotional fractures, disaffection or rejection among families, friends or citizens”.
NEWS: Days before Spain’s triple election year begins, with regional elections set for May 2015, regional finance ministers say the new plan is a “gigantic injustice” that creates unnecessary tension.
NEWS: Mrs. Castedo is a suspect in two town planning corruption cases in Alicante (Valencia); in November, the Popular Party demanded she resign before a visit by Felipe VI.
NEWS: Dozens of complaints are to be aggregated under the first one presented by Manos Limpias; Catalan National Assembly announces a “self-accusation” support campaign.
NEWS: The judge’s 150-page ruling means Princess Cristina will become the first member of the Spanish Royal Family to be tried for a crime in open court. She could be jailed for up to 6.5 years.
NEWS: New survey data show Podemos is forecast to win the next general election in the region, and Republican Catalan Left the next regional elections. Junqueras repeats call for early elections.
NEWS: “It all seems to indicate this is a personal thing, nothing to do with terrorism”, a police spokesman told Spanish radio broadcaster RNE.
NEWS: The senior magistrates want the Chief Justice to petition the Prime Minister to bring the statements to an end, after the Home Secretary criticised the recent release of prisoners.
NEWS: Mr. Torres Dulce has been a key figure in the Catalan independence debate, struggling to maintain the independence of his office as the government rushed to respond to November 9.