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Massive Madrid protest erupts against potential Catalan amnesty deal

Monday, September 25th 2023 - 08:06 UTC
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Conservatives fear that acting Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez could grant amnesty to Catalan separatists in return for political support. Conservatives fear that acting Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez could grant amnesty to Catalan separatists in return for political support.

Tens of thousands of Spaniards took to the streets in Madrid on Sunday to protest against reports that acting Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez could grant amnesty to Catalan separatists in return for political support. Protesters chanted “out, out” and “Sanchez, resign.”

Authorities estimated the turnout to be 40,000 people while the conservative People's Party (PP), which organized the event, said around 60,000 protesters attended.

A number of PP figures participated on stage including Madrid Mayor Jose Luis Martinez-Almeida and regional president Isabel Diaz Ayuso, as well as two of Spain's former leaders, Mariano Rajoy and Jose Maria Aznar.

Although PP leader Alberto Nunez Feijoo won the Spanish election in July, his party along with the far-fight Vox party and two smaller conservative parties fell four seats short of achieving a majority in parliament and forming government..

Meanwhile, Sanchez could secure enough votes in parliament to stay in office if he wins the support of the country's regional political parties from Catalonia and the Basque country.

Chief among them is Junts per Catalunya led by exiled former Catalonia leader Carles Puigdemont, whose party holds seven seats.

Puigdemont, who is wanted in Spain for attempting the crime of secession in 2017, has demanded that legal actions be dropped against fellow separatists as a condition for his support.

Sanchez is reportedly considering such a deal but has not made any announcements. The lower of the Spanish parliament will vote on Fernandez Feijoo's candidacy for prime minister on Tuesday.

His bid is widely expected to fall short, paving the way for Sanchez to put forward his candidacy and possibly a coalition including the secessionist Catalonians, which Spanish conservatives abhor.

Categories: Politics, International.

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