SPAIN’S Supreme Court has dismissed an appeal from the family of former dictator Francisco Franco to halt preparations for the proposed exhuming of his remains.
The court’s Contentious-Administrative Chamber, ruled that the appeal over Franco’s remains moving from the Valley of the Fallen should not be heard. The appeal was dismissed because exhumation procedures remain incomplete, according to court sources.
The Franco family had appealed to the court to stop moves towards the exhumation while outstanding legal issues including the former dictator’s final resting place are dealt with.
The seven grandchildren of Franco have been locked in legal wrangling over his exhumation after the Council of Ministers approved the plans in November.
The family want him to be buried in a crypt in Madrid’s La Almudena Cathedral while the government opposes this over concerns it could become a far-right pilgrimage site.
Government sources said they were preparing a decree against the plans. Efforts to deal with the exhumation plans in parliament have stumbled recently due to opposition from the conservative Partido Popular (PP) and the centrist Ciudadanos.
The Valley of the Fallen, near Madrid, is controversial due to its housing of Franco’s remains and the fact that it was built by forced labour from political prisoners.
Separately in Cataluña, Barcelona City Council has passed a motion calling for Spain to ban a group which promotes Franco’s legacy.
Deputy Mayor Jaume Asens said the motion on the Francisco Franco Foundation was passed over concerns the group’s existence violated Spain’s Historical Memory Laws and human rights.
The Foundation claims its existence is permitted under free speech laws and that it does nothing illegal.