Pedro Sánchez does not plan to take advantage of the PP crisis to call elections. In a press appearance together with the Prime Minister of Denmark, Mette Frederiksen, the president has insisted that the legislature will last until the end of 2023 and has avoided “interfering” in the war unleashed in the main opposition party by avoiding ruling on a hypothetical jump to the leadership of Alberto Núñez Feijóo, although he has assured that he hopes that “they will solve as soon as possible” their internal problems.
Ayuso’s brother’s masks were of a cheaper model than those set by the contract
“Spain needs stability and not only does the Government provide it, it is also provided by the main opposition party. I hope they resolve this crisis as soon as possible,” Sánchez replied. “I am never going to interfere in any situation of any party,” said Sánchez, who lived five years ago a situation similar to that of Pablo Casado when the powers that be of the PSOE asked for his resignation, although for very different reasons. “The Government is working on what it is: overcoming this terrible pandemic, consolidating economic growth, and managing European funds so that, when the legislature ends in 2023, we can have a better country,” he said.
However, the president wanted to emphasize the doubts about the contract for the acquisition of masks for which the Government of Isabel Díaz Ayuso paid 1.5 million euros to a friend’s company and this, in turn, at least 55,580 euros to the president’s brother, who was the one who obtained the material, despite not being able to contract with that administration. “Above all, they clarify the doubts about the irregularities and corruption that may have occurred in the Community of Madrid”, he has expressed. The PSOE, like Más Madrid and Podemos, has filed a complaint with the Prosecutor’s Office.
Beyond that, Sánchez has not wanted to comment on what could happen in the leadership of the PP. Asked if he is concerned that this crisis will cause an even greater rise of the extreme right, he has not expressly linked it, but he has expressed concern. “The rise of Vox is not good news for any democrat and certainly not for us and for me in particular,” replied Sánchez, who has insisted on his offer to allow Alfonso Fernández Mañueco to govern in Castilla y León if the PP makes the decision to apply a “sanitary cordon” to Vox. “If the PP is willing to open that debate, the main opposition party [en este caso el PSOE] is willing to open that door”, reiterated the socialist leader who did not want, however, to answer the question of whether he believes that with Feijóo it would be easier to reach agreements than with Casado.
Remove mask indoors? “when appropriate”
Sánchez has appeared together with the Danish Prime Minister with whom he has met in Moncloa to discuss relations between the two countries, but also to share the position regarding the debate on the ecological transition. The Spanish president has reiterated the government’s rejection of the Brussels proposal to label gas and nuclear energy as green.
Regarding overcoming the pandemic and given the presence of the leader of Denmark, where the mask is no longer mandatory even indoors, Sánchez has said that this decision will depend in Spain on what the technicians say. “We hope that in the near future we can address this measure, but it has to be the scientific community that gives us its contribution, its opinion. The Government of Spain will adopt measures that are in line with recovering our long-awaited normality,” he replied, before clarify: “We will open that door when appropriate, when science tells us, the health professionals”. “We hope it will be sooner rather than later,” she concluded. For her part, Mette Frederiksen has assured that it is a measure that has been taken in Denmark due to the high rates of booster vaccination, but she has emphasized that it is a decision that must be made at the national level.
Sánchez in favor of keeping troops in Mali
They have also agreed in the “unity” of the EU and within NATO regarding the situation in Ukraine. In fact, Sánchez has rejected that Germany maintains a position different from that of the other allied countries. “The reality of each country is what it is, but apart from that, the truth is that we are all united in sending a clear message to Putin of unity and clearly of solidarity with Ukraine. This is a message of commitment to the right when it comes to issues such as national sovereignty and territorial integrity that are now being called into question”, he explained.
Both have been in favor of diplomacy to resolve the conflict and de-escalate the tension. But the Danish Prime Minister has gone a step further by ensuring that they are willing “to act” when the time comes. Sánchez also wanted to send a “resounding message to Putin to make him see that the escalation of the situation in Ukraine could harm him greatly from an economic point of view and could isolate him from the entire international community.”
Sánchez has also been in favor of maintaining the military presence in the Sahel after France has announced the withdrawal of troops from Mali -where Spain participates in an EU mission for the training of the army of that country-. “The international community cannot leave the Sahel,” declared the president, who assured that the foreign presence contributes to the “stability” and “development” of Mali and the rest of the region. Sánchez acknowledged that it will be the EU that makes the decision, but that Spain “will give its opinion”: “Spain’s opinion is that if circumstances allow it, Europe cannot abandon that place that is key and strategic for the security of everyone”.