Global swanning

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OPPOSITION leader, the Partido Popular’s Albero Nuñez Feijoo accused Pedro Sanchez of “paying homage to autocrats” at the recent Ibero-American summit.

It was unclear which autocrats the president of Spain’s government fawned over, as Venezuela’s undeniably autocratic president Nicolas Maduro was absent, although the country was represented at the summit.

Likewise Daniel Ortega, Nicaragua’s former revolutionary-turned-dictator. Instead, the country’s Foreign Minister Denis Moncada listened with gritted teeth as Chile’s president Gabriel Boric condemned Ortega’s decision to strip 94 Nicaraguan writers, journalists and human rights activists of their nationality.

Cuba was present naturally, but Spain has always had a co-dependent relationship with Cuba and Franco, a Galician like Fidel Castro, maintained friendly relations with Cuba .  Castro reciprocated with three days’ mourning when Franco died in November 1975.

Former PP president Jose Maria Aznar was once photographed with Fidel Castro and another PP president Mariano Rajoy, who participated in Ibero-American summits, reprimanded socialist president Jose Luis Zapatero’s for missing the 2010 Argentina meeting during the economic crisis.

Notably present at the Santo Domingo meeting was Spain’s head of state, King Felipe, also presumably kowtowing to the Latin American autocrats.

Moncloa – Spain’s equivalent of Downing Street – was quick to respond, counter-accusing Feijoo of “ignorance” as well as “insolvency” and “bad faith.”

Feijoo is unlikely to lose much sleep over any of this.

As the local and regional elections approach, the PP leads the PSOE in most polls, apart from the Centre for Sociological Investigation (CIS) whose president Jose Felix Tezanos is a Sanchez fan.  CIS predictions consistently contradict other polls, including that of the largely pro-government daily, El Pais.

As Spain prepares to take over the six-month European Council presidency on July 1, Pedro Sanchez is currently here, there and everywhere, not only in Santo Domingo but also Beijing.

He admittedly cuts an imposing figure but not only PP voters are tired of his global swanning and their PSOE counterparts increasingly fail to share the CIS’s confidence.

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Written by

Linda Hall

Originally from the UK, Linda is based in Valenca and is a reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering local news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at