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Pedro Sanchez, stubborn survivor of Spain's political gridlock

Madrid - A former basketball player once dubbed "Mr Handsome" for his boyish good looks, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez is a political survivor whose rollercoaster career has played out to the backdrop of chronic instability.

Spain votes as Catalonia tensions mount

Madrid - Spain voted Sunday in its fourth general election in as many years with heightened tensions over Catalonia's separatist push in the foreground, an issue that has fuelled a surge in support for upstart far-right party Vox.

Spain exhumes Franco's embalmed body from opulent tomb

Madrid - Spain on Thursday exhumed the embalmed body of Francisco Franco from a grandiose state mausoleum ahead of its relocation it to a more discreet grave in a country still conflicted over the dictator's decades-long regime.

Catalan crisis looms large over Spain's November election

Barcelona - Spain's Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and the opposition leader visited Barcelona on Monday to meet police struggling with Catalan separatist violence in a crisis that could be a game-changer in next month's general election.

Spanish PM under pressure over Catalan protests

Barcelona - Spain's Socialist Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez faced sharp criticism Sunday for his handling of violent Catalan separatist protests ahead of next month's general election, even as calm returned to Barcelona and other cities.

How Catalan protest tactics are inspired by Hong Kong

Madrid - From blocking airports to using encrypted messaging apps, Catalan separatists demonstrating against the jailing of nine of their leaders are openly copying tactics devised by pro-democracy protestors in Hong Kong.

Protests and strike stoke jitters over Catalan economy

Barcelona - The tenors fell silent at Barcelona's opera house on Friday where a performance of Turandot was cancelled as a general strike and mass protests brought Catalonia to a halt after Spain's top court jailed nine separatist leaders.

More Barcelona violence feared as separatists call for new protest

Barcelona - Barcelona was bracing for fresh violence Saturday after nearly 200 people were hurt in a night of clashes with radical separatists hurling rocks and fireworks at police who responded with tear gas and rubber bullets.

In Catalonia, frustration boils over into violence

Barcelona - After years of peaceful separatist demonstrations, violence finally exploded on the Catalan streets this week, led by activists frustrated by the political paralysis and infuriated by the Supreme Court's conviction of nine of its leaders over a failed ...

Catalan separatists, police clash in fresh violence

Barcelona - Catalan separatists burned barricades and clashed with police in Barcelona on Thursday in a fourth night of violence triggered by Spain's jailing of nine of their leaders over a failed independence bid.

Violence 'must stop now', Catalan leader says as Barcelona burns

Barcelona - Catalan president Quim Torra called for an immediate halt to the violent clashes that rocked Barcelona for a third day Wednesday, warning they were harming the image of the separatist movement.

Fresh protests in Spain over Catalan sentence

Barcelona - Catalan separatists on Tuesday blocked streets and train tracks in protest against Spain's jailing of nine of their leaders, as the Spanish government hit out at what it called "generalised violence" a day after activists stormed Barcelona airport.

Top Spain court to rule on Catalan separatist leaders' fate

Madrid - Spain's Supreme Court is expected to issue a verdict Monday in the controversial case of 12 Catalan leaders over their role in a failed 2017 independence bid that sparked the country's worst political crisis in decades.

Spain braces for verdict in Catalan separatist leaders' case

Madrid - Spain was battening down the hatches Friday ahead of a Supreme Court ruling on the fate of 12 Catalan leaders for their role in a failed 2017 independence bid that sparked the country's worst political crisis in decades.

No building permit needed for Franco exhumation, Spain's Supreme court rules

Madrid - The Spanish government does not need a building permit to remove the remains of late dictator Francisco Franco from a grandiose mausoleum near Madrid, Spain's Supreme Court said in a ruling made public Monday rejecting an appeal against the exhumation ...

UN apologizes for attributing Guernica bombing to Spanish Republicans

New York - The United Nations has apologized to Spain for having mistakenly attributed the devastating 1937 bombing of the town of Guernica to Spanish Republican forces, a spokesman said Monday.

Spain in last-chance bid to avoid fresh elections

Madrid - Spain's Pedro Sanchez has just nine days left to resolve a political crisis that could drag the country to its fourth elections in as many years. Everything hinges on him securing support from the far-left Podemos.

Lampedusa mayor slams Rome over migrant boat standoff

Lampedusa - The mayor of Italy's Lampedusa island on Thursday denounced the collapsing government for its failure to deal with migrant rescue boats, as a ship carrying 356 people remained stranded in the Mediterranean.

Migrants in limbo again after landing in Italy

Lampedusa - Dozens of migrants who disembarked on Italy's Lampedusa island were again in limbo Wednesday as a European deal to redistribute them failed to materialise and Madrid said it could hit the Spanish charity with a huge fine for rescuing them.

5,000 evacuated as Canary Islands wildfire rages

A raging wildfire on the Spanish holiday island of Gran Canaria forced the evacuation of some 5,000 people, authorities said Sunday, warning it could take days for the blaze to be brought under control.

Reluctant Salvini allows minors to leave Italy migrant ship

Rome - Italy's far-right Interior Minister Matteo Salvini on Saturday reluctantly let 27 migrant children rescued at sea disembark from a charity vessel anchored in limbo off Lampedusa island for days.

Italy prosecutors probe Salvini over migrant ship limbo

Rome - Italian prosecutors have opened an investigation into alleged kidnapping and abuse of office after far-right Interior Minister Matteo Salvini prevented a charity ship carrying rescued migrants from docking.

'Explosive' situation on migrant rescue boat in limbo off Italy

Rome - The captain of a Spanish charity ship carrying 134 rescued migrants warned Friday of an "explosive" situation on board the vessel anchored within swimming distance of Italy's Lampedusa island but forbidden to approach.

Italy's defence minister blocks decree against migrant ship Open Arms

Rome - Italy's defence minister on Thursday blocked a new decree by far-right interior minister Matteo Salvini to ban the rescue ship Open Arms with 147 migrants on board from Italian territorial waters, in a move seen as part of the political crisis in Rome....

Migrant rescue ship heads for Italy after judge overrules Salvini

Rome - Spanish humanitarian ship Open Arms headed for the Italian island of Lampedusa on Wednesday with 147 rescued migrants on board after a judge in Rome suspended far-right Interior Minister Matteo Salvini's decree banning them from Italy's territorial wat...

Rescue ship picks up 85 as Richard Gere shines light on migrant plight

The Ocean Viking charity ship plucked 85 African migrants from the sea off Libya Friday, the latest rescue in the Mediterranean as Hollywood star Richard Gere boarded a second vessel to highlight the plight of those stranded.

Rescue ship plucks 85 from the sea as Richard Gere shines light on migrant plight

The Ocean Viking had barely reached the huge rescue zone off Libya when it plucked 85 African migrants from an inflatable grey boat on Friday.

Spaniards paraded alive in coffins in gratitude for defying death

Vigo - Six open coffins are paraded around a church and its cemetery as onlookers sing religious songs -- but their occupants are all perfectly alive.

Pedro Sanchez, riding Spain's rollercoaster politics

Madrid - A year after his surprise climb to the post of prime minister, Spain's Socialist leader Pedro Sanchez on Tuesday failed to secure the support of other parties to stay on in the role, in the latest turn in a rollercoaster political career.

Spain's Sanchez seeks backing to remain in power

Madrid - Spain's outgoing socialist prime minister Pedro Sanchez on Monday outlined a government programme with a boost in social spending in the hope of persuading the far-left to help him back into power amid tough negotiations.
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