PP blocks institutional declaration by Spanish parliament to ban neo-fascist parties

Ciudadanos backed IU proposal after knowing that it would fail

Izquierda Unida (IU) [United Left], Alberto Garzón's party, proposed that Congress read an institutional statement to denounce the rise of neo-fascism. In this statement, to which EFE has had access, IU also says that —should the declaration be approved— the Spanish parliament would urge the Spanish government to "ban neo-fascist and neo-Nazi groups" as well as any other "foundation or association that exalts or glorifies Nazism and Fascism. "

The reading of this declaration would require unanimous approval by all parliamentary groups. The PP, at a press conference in parliament, declined to endorse the statement, a decision that killed the proposal. "We will not subscribe to a biased, neo-communist text that addresses only half of the problem that it intends to deal with," said José Ignacio Echániz, deputy spokesman for the PP in Madrid’s lower chamber.

Echániz said that his group “is opposed to fascism, hatred, and violence," but they did not want to support the statement because, in their opinion, it is missing nuances, such as an explicit reference to ETA.

In contrast, Ciudadanos decided to support this IU proposal at the last minute, after learning that it would not succeed. Party sources announced their change of heart a few minutes after the PP press conference and confirmed that, whether or not their amendments to add a condemnation of nationalism were approved, they would sign in support of the statement. In the end, however, the statement will not be read due to the lack of unanimity.

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