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PSOE and ‘Ciutadans’ reach an agreement and will oppose “any attempt” to hold a referendum in Catalonia

Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE) and anti-Catalan nationalism ‘Ciutadans’ have agreed to form “a reformist and progressive” government. The 66-page document, which both parties signed this Wednesday, includes the commitment to oppose “any attempt to hold a referendum with the objective of launching the auto-determination of any territory in Spain”, in clear reference to Catalonia’s push for independence. The document also aims to launch, during the first month of the term of office, an ‘express reform’ of the Spanish Constitution and start writing a new project at the beginning of 2017. Thus, ‘Ciutadans’ will support PSOE leader Pedro Sánchez’s investiture in the upcoming debate, which will take place on the 1st of March. However, together both parties have only 130 seats, far from the 176 required to invest Sánchez in the first round.

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24 February 2016 01:57 PM

by

ACN

Barcelona (CNA).- The agreement to form government reached by Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE) and anti-Catalan nationalism ‘Ciutadans’ includes opposition to “to any attempt to hold a referendum with the objective of launching the auto-determination of any territory in Spain”, in clear reference to Catalonia’s push for independence. The 66-page document which both parties signed this Wednesday aims to form “a reformist and progressive” government and foresees an ‘express reform’ of the Spanish Constitution. Thus, ‘Ciutadans’ will support PSOE leader Pedro Sánchez’s investiture in the upcoming debate, which will take place on the 1st of March. However, together both parties have only 130 seats, far from the 176 required to invest Sánchez in the first round. ‘Ciutadans’ leader Albert Rivera called for those parties “which defend Spain’s unity” to “make an effort” and join the agreement reached with PSOE.


“I’ve heard some parties which claim that this agreement doesn’t add up” stated PSOE’s leader Pedro Sánchez, adding, in clear reference to alternative left ‘Podemos’, “they haven’t understood a single thing, because it does add up”. “It is a historic agreement between two national parties which have agreed not only on the investiture but on many progressive measures which our country requires” he added and emphasised that the agreement “suggests a solution to Spain’s political deadlock”.

PSOE’s leader assured that the agreement “doesn’t expire” and, therefore, will still be in force in the event that he doesn’t get enough votes in the first round of the investiture debate. PSOE and ‘Ciutadans’ together have only 130 seats, far from the 176 required to invest Sánchez in the first round.

Call for other parties to join the agreement

According to Sánchez, the agreement signed by PSOE and ‘Ciutadans’ “is a success” which has been possible thanks to “generosity” and which will allow “Spanish citizens to win” thanks to the combination of both electoral programmes. Sánchez asked for the other parties to be generous as well and “not to create new fronts” in reference, again, to ‘Podemos’.

‘Ciutadans’ leader Albert Rivera called for those parties “which defend Spain’s unity” to “make an effort” and join the agreement reached with PSOE. According to Rivera, the document “guarantees that Spanish citizens will continue to be compatriots”" and urged the other parties to be “brave and generous” enough to support it. At a press conference this Monday, Rivera explained that the document signed by ‘Ciutadans’ and PSOE summarises the spirit of the Spanish political transition, led by Adolfo Suárez in the late seventies after Franco’s dictatorship, and represents “the basis of a new political era” in which will prevail “that which unites us rather than separates us”.

Reform of the Spanish Constitution

The document also aims to launch, during the first month of the term of office, an ‘express reform’ of the Spanish Constitution and start writing a new project at the beginning of 2017. The new Constitution should establish “precisely” Spain’s competences and those of the Autonomous Communities, as well as setting the basis of the funding system.

Economic reform

The agreement also aims to launch an economic reform which will reduce and simplify the kinds of employment contract, amongst other measures. Income tax  on wage earners will be increased and others taxes, such as that imposed on the cultural sector, which is currently 21%, will be reduced. The document also foresees the creation of a tax on big fortunes and the revision of inheritance taxes.

Fight against corruption

The document also establishes some measures to fight against political corruption, one of ‘Ciutadans’s political programme’s core measures; for example, not to include in the electoral list or give positions to people who are being investigated. In the same vein, the agreement foresees abolishing the condition of granted immunity, which allow MPs, senators and other members of the government to avoid being taken before the Supreme Court. Finally, the document restricts to 8 years, two consecutive terms of office, the maximum mandate of the president of the government. 

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  • PSOE's leader, Pedro Sánchez and anti-Catalan nationalism 'Ciutadans' leader, Albert Rivera, reached an agreement to form government (by ACN)

  • PSOE's leader, Pedro Sánchez and anti-Catalan nationalism 'Ciutadans' leader, Albert Rivera, reached an agreement to form government (by ACN)