CARETAKER Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez and the leader of left-wing Unidas Podemos, Pablo Iglesias, have signed a preliminary agreement to form a coalition government after Sunday’s inconclusive repeat general election in Spain.
After months of negotiations following the April election, which failed to break the political stalemate, the two party leaders have made an agreement less than 48 hours after Sunday’s vote.
At just before 2.30pm today (Tuesday), Sánchez and Iglesias appeared before the press to sign their agreement, before they both made statements.
As the press conference came to an end, the pair embrace.
The preliminary agreement offers Unidos Podemos a similar role as that offered in April, to which Iglesias turned down at the time. Now, if the deal comes to fruition, Iglesias will be the deputy prime minister and stated: “I’m pleased to announce today, together with Pedro Sánchez, that we have reached a preliminary agreement to create a progressive coalition government that combines the experience of the PSOE with the courage of Unidas Podemos.”
Unidos Podemos have posted on their Facebook page:
“Thanks to all the people who have not stopped pushing to make this agreement possible. It’s time to work to start, urgently, policies that help improve people’s lives. For that we were born Yes you can.”
PP sources said that the deal between Sánchez and Iglesias “frees the party of the pressure to support the PSOE in the formation of a government, and clears the way for them to exercise responsible opposition.”
PP leader, Casado, went on to call for Sánchez to step down. “The historical PSOE must return,” he said. “It’s important for Sánchez to go because he is the blockage, but it’s also important for the sensible PSOE to return. The public should be calling on him to emerge from the labyrinth in which he entered.”
“We are not going to be part of a government that he calls progressive, but which is on the radical left, and in cahoots with the Catalan regional government, which is breaking the law. We will be up to the circumstances.”
-PP leader Pablo Casado
Centre-right Ciudadanos (Citizens) also informed it would not support Sánchez’s deal with Podemos.
“We call on the responsibility of the PSOE and PP to reach a moderate deal with Ciudadanos that respects the Constitution, based on good state deals for our country… Ciudadanos cannot back Sánchez and Podemos taking the reins of the Spanish government. It is disastrous and runs counter to the interests of the majority of Spaniards.”
520 million euros have been spent on the Spanish General Elections over the last four years