Opposition parties in Spain are calling on the government to explain why one of its ministers met Venezuela’s vice-president in a secretive encounter onboard a private jet at Madrid airport.
Socialist leader Pedro Sanchez won the narrowest of victories in Parliament on Tuesday to take power for a second term in Spain with the backing of the anti-austerity party Podemos and a Catalan separatist group.
Spain's Socialists and far-left Unidas Podemos party agreed on the basis of a coalition government on Tuesday, just two days after a parliamentary election delivered a highly fragmented parliament.
The Spanish Socialist leader, Pablo Iglesias, appeared before the Spanish Senate on Thursday over the alleged illegal financing that his political coalition, Podemos, could have received from Venezuela and Iran. In a tense debate with a senator from the Popular Party (PP), Iglesias said that the situation in the South American country “is disastrous” and that he regrets things he has said in the past.
Accusations of hypocrisy have rained down on the couple that heads Spain's far-left Podemos party for buying a 600,000-Euro luxury home with a swimming pool after previously condemning such extravagance. The purchase caused unease among the rank and file of Podemos, which was formed in 2014 to represent the people against the caste -- as it called the country's political and business elites -- and there are fears it could cost the party at the ballot box.
The conservative Popular Party of Mariano Rajoy, Spain's caretaker prime minister, won the most votes in Spain’s repeat national elections on Sunday, while the Socialists held off a challenge from the Podemos Party to remain the largest left-wing formation. The fragmented result, however, did not settle who will form the country’s next government.
Spain will hold a repeat of national elections in June following the failure of a last-ditch effort by King Felipe VI to prod bickering Spanish politicians to form a new government. The King chose not to ask any candidates he interviewed this week to try to form a government and break a stalemate that has left Spain with a caretaker government in the wake of inconclusive elections in December.
With the triumph on Sunday in Greece of the Syriza anti austerity party, Spain's version, Podemos under the leadership of Pablo Iglesias, and ahead in the opinion polls for the next national election, celebrated and addressed the issue of Gibraltar saying relations between the Rock and neighboring La Línea should not fall victim to political opportunism.
Spain’s Socialist opposition leader Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba has stepped down after his party suffered its worst election result on Sunday's ballot for the European Parliament. Socialists lost nine European parliament seats, while the the ruling conservative People’s Party lost eight.