17th June 2024
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Spain’s PP unites with far-right Vox to govern Valencia region in a coalition

Spain’s right-wing People’s Party (PP) and the far-right Vox party reached a deal on Tuesday to govern the region of Valencia in a tie-up that could be replicated nationally if the right wins 23 July general election.

With less than six weeks until the snap election, the two parties reached ‘a government agreement in principle’, said Juan Francisco Pérez, a negotiator for the PP, which polls suggest is on track to win.

The parties ‘have agreed on a coalition government in the Valencia region’, Vox wrote on social media.

Valencia has five million residents and is Spain’s fourth-largest region in terms of population. The agreement means Valencia will become the second of Spain’s 17 regions to be jointly ruled by the PP and Vox, the first being Castilla y León, since it held an election last year.

The Valencia deal is the first big agreement between the two factions following their success in the 28 May local and regional elections, with the PP’s Carlos Mazón taking over as regional leader.

Socialist (PSOE) Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez announced the 23 July general election, following his party’s disastrous results in the 28 May local and regional elections.

Before the vote on 28 May, of the 12 regions where new leaders were to be elected, 10 had been run by the socialists, either alone or in coalition. The PP finally seized six of the regions from the socialists, but needs the support of Vox to govern in five of them: Aragón, the Balearics, Extremadura, Murcia and Valencia.

Polls have long suggested that PP leader Alberto Núñez Feijoo’s chances of replacing Sánchez hinge on his party inking a pact with Vox – which could harm his image as a moderate.

During negotiations over Valencia, the PP managed to ensure that Vox’s regional candidate Carlos Flores — who was convicted in 2002 of psychologically abusing his ex-wife – would not be given any role in

‘I’m not stepping aside, I’m moving forward,’ said Flores, who has now left regional politics to run as a Vox candidate in the general elections.

The PP-Vox deal was dismissed as ’embarrassing and shameful’ by socialist spokeswoman and Education Minister Pilar Alegría, who denounced Vox for fielding a candidate like Flores.

The PP has ‘reached a deal with a party which rejects the idea of gender violence out of hand, which says it doesn’t even exist’, she said [see Tweet below]. ‘And even worse, this man (Flores) has been convicted of domestic violence.’

The PP and Vox parties also signed a pact to jointly govern Elche, a town of 230,000 residents in the Valencia region in what was their first such deal at a municipal level.

ALSO READ: Podemos and 14 other left-wing groups will run in election with Díaz’s Sumar.

ALSO READ: Pedro Sánchez goes on the attack, labelling the PP and Vox as being both far-right.

ALSO READ: Pedro Sánchez announces General Election for Sunday 23 July.

ALSO READ: Spain’s right-wing make significant gains in local and regional elections.

ALSO READ: Yolanda Díaz: ‘I want to be the first female president of my country’.

ALSO READ: Spain’s labour minister Yolanda Díaz launches new political movement, ‘Sumar’.

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