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PP and Ciutadans deal with far-right support sparks political outrage

Catalan president links it with "fascist outbreaks," Barcelona mayor calls it "agreement of shame," while Ciutadans says Vox is not its "partner"

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10 January 2019 03:23 PM

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ACN | Barcelona

The party leading opposition in Catalonia, unionist Ciutadans (Cs), will be part of a government in southern Spain headed by the People's Party (PP) with the support of Vox, the far right rising force.

This was confirmed on Wednesday with PP and Vox sealing an agreement in Seville, Andalusia, and since then the outraged reactions from the rest of the parties, especially in Catalonia, have not ceased.

Right-wing Cs, PP and Vox ran electoral campaigns portraying the independence movement as a major threat to Spanish unity.

Catalan president: "New fascist outbreaks worry me"

The Catalan president, Quim Torra, was one of the officials reacting to the news. "The fact that there are new fascist outbreaks worries me as a European," he said.

Vox has some links with other parties in Europe such as French Marine Le Pen's National Rally –formerly known as National Front.

Parliament speaker: "Agreement of shame"

Roger Torrent, the Catalan parliament speaker, called the agreement between PP and Vox "an agreement of shame."

  • "[Far-right Vox] backs sexist, homophobic, and racist ideas"

    Ada Colau · Mayor of Barcelona

On his Twitter account, the speaker affirmed that "First, they accepted their rhetoric, then they opened the doors to the institutions and now they're going to govern thanks to them," referring to Vox.

Barcelona mayor: Vox "antidemocratic and against human rights"

Barcelona's mayor, Ada Colau, coinciding with Torrent in saying that the People's Party and Ciutadans have made "an agreement of shame" with Vox, a party she called "antidemocratic and against human rights."

"It backs sexist, homophobic, and racist ideas," she added. For her, the agreement "crosses a red line in democracy."

A spokesman for the pro-independence Esquerra party (ERC) in the Spanish parliament, Joan Tardà, warned that Catalonia always suffers when a right-wing party wins in Spain. "We always prefer progressive governments in Spain. Not only because that's what Spanish society deserves, but because it's also vital for Catalonia to be able to live freely," he said.

Socialists: right-wing parties want to "eliminate" devolved powers

The Socialists, who will be ousted from a four-decade rule in Andalusia, also rejected the agreement.

"We do not include in our negotiations everything outside the Constitutional framework, while the People's Party negotiates with Vox the suppression of Article 8 in the constitution when they say they want to eliminate the devolved powers for regions," said the public administrations Spanish minister, Meritxell Batet, who is Catalan. 

Ciutadans: PP "only" partner

Yet the leader of Ciutadans in Catalonia, Inés Arrimadas, said on Thursday that they are not partners with Vox. "In Andalusia we only have one partner, and its name is the People's Party, although some would like for the reality to be another," she said.

Arrimadas added that both Cs and PP have "enough power to govern," despite not having the majority. Vox will vote 'Yes' to the new cabinet, but will not join it.

Juanma Moreno, the PP leader in Andalusia who will become president of the region thanks to the agreement, insisted on Thursday that it is "responsible, realistic and sensible," and that it opens the doors to the "great aim," which is "the change" of government.

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  • Image of a 10,000-strong Vox party meeting in Madrid in October 2018 (by Vox)

  • Image of a 10,000-strong Vox party meeting in Madrid in October 2018 (by Vox)

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