Thousands demonstrate in Madrid against amnesty for Catalan pro-independence supporters

Madrid, Sep 24 (EFE).- Thousands of people in Madrid attended Sunday an event called by the conservative Popular Party (PP) to support the appointment of its leader, Alberto Núñez Feijóo, as president of the government and against the hypothetical amnesty requested by the Catalan independence supporters for those who participated in the secessionist process of 2017.

The event, also attended by the former presidents of the Government that the PP has had, José María Aznar and Mariano Rajoy, took place 48 hours before the beginning of the investiture debate of Núñez Feijóo in Congress, for which, so far, he does not have a sufficient majority.

The leader of the PP promised before some 40,000 people, according to the Government delegation, that he would defend a Spain “of free and equal citizens” “whatever it costs him,” including the presidency of the Government, and for this reason, he said that he is opposed to an amnesty that was not voted for in the last elections of July 23.

“What no Spaniard voted for, at least 94%, was a change in the constitutional regime,” he said. “That was not voted, it is a fraud, (…). We are not going to negotiate frauds”, he concluded.

In last July’s elections, the PP won 137 seats, which, together with the 33 of the far-right Vox, which supports him, and two more from two regionalist groups, brings together 172 votes in favor of Feijóo’s appointment. He would need the support of 176 deputies of the 350 that make up the Congress, but the rest have already announced that they would vote against him.

That hypothetical amnesty requested by the Catalan independence supporters for their leaders who participated in the secessionist process of 2017 is intended to be negotiated with the Socialists in exchange for their support for the leader of the PSOE, Pedro Sánchez, to reinstate his government.

The PP considers that such an amnesty would be unconstitutional. In this sense, Aznar, with a great predicament among conservatives, harangued today to raise his voice and not to remain silent in front of the “infamy” of an amnesty to the “attempted coup” of the independence process and demanded that “all those who can decide should decide in conscience” in defense of equality.

That message coincides with that of multiple PP leaders who have called in recent days to the Socialists critical of Sanchez to support the investiture of Feijóo, something that from the PSOE is considered to be promoting transfugism, which Sanchez considered today “the worst of corruption,” at a rally he attended in Barcelona.

In a Spanish Congress divided into two large blocs, but without a majority: the conservative (PP and Vox) and the progressive with PSOE and the group to its left Sumar, both need the support of the nationalist parties, both Catalan and Basque, to achieve a majority, but the fact that the PP has the support of Vox, prevents these parties from supporting the conservative bloc.

The demonstrators from all over Spain supported Feijóo with shouts of “president, president.” At the same time, the protests focused on Pedro Sánchez with resounding “out, out” or “Sánchez resign.”

The mayor of Madrid, José Luis Martínez-Almeida, and the regional president of Madrid, Isabel Díaz Ayuso, also took the stage. EFE


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