There was a lot of expectation surrounding Félix Bolaños’ visit to the community capital. After meeting with Vera Jourovávice president of Transparency and Values, and Didier ReyndersCommissioner of Justice, the Minister of the Presidency and Justice has reiterated that most of the time of the discussion with both of them has been about the “maximal concern” of the European Commission with the blockade of the General Council of the Judiciary, which will next Monday adds five years without renewing.
Bolaños: “Most of the time we have dedicated has been to talking about the renewal of the CGPJ”
“I have to tell you that most of the time we have dedicated has been to talking about the renewal of the CGPJ. The concern of the European Commission is maximum, because it is something that is already affecting not only institutional normality, but is also affecting citizens’ right to effective judicial protection,” he stated at the press conference.
“Very good meeting with the new Minister of Justice Bolaños. We have reviewed the situation regarding the General Council of the Judiciary and the latest developments regarding the amnesty law. The dialogue with the Spanish authorities will continue,” he limited himself to point out Reynders through X.
The trip to the community capital is framed in the middle of the battle against the amnesty that the Popular Party is waging in Brussels. It arrives, however, at a critical moment for the blue formation. Last week, the delegation led Dolors Montserrat promoted a debate in the Strasbourg plenary session entitled ‘Threats to the rule of law as a consequence of the government agreement in Spain’. The main objective of the blues was to put the focus and pressure on the European Commission.
But the head of Justice stuck to the official line that the Community Executive has defended since the beginning of the controversy. And this is none other than the Catalan issue is an “internal matter” of Spain. The Belgian reiterated that, as the Commission always does, he will study the bill “carefully” and “objectively.” The final ruling of the Berlaymont legal experts is not expected until the legislation concludes the procedure in the Spanish courts.
A week later, the popular offensive moved to the European Committee of the Regions. Again without success. The Murcian president, Fernando Lopez Miras, presented an amendment on Wednesday for the full committee to take a position against the amnesty and to call for an EU-wide ban on amnesties for corruption or misappropriation of public funds. But it was rejected.
Bolaños: “”I would appreciate the PP not trying to damage the reputation of our country to achieve political objectives that also fail”
“I would appreciate the PP not trying to damage the reputation of our country to achieve political objectives that also fail. In Europe there is no concern with the rule of law. It is legitimate to oppose the amnesty law, but do not play with the good name of Spain. You are a patriot when you defend Spain and speak well of Spain and not generate noise and doubts, which there are none,” he expressed.
In defense of the amnesty law
It is this framework in which the defense strategy of the Government led by Pedro Sánchez is being forged. Today Bolaños has taken the lead in convincing Brussels that this is an internal matter, that the entire process fully respects the Constitution and that the noise is only part of the opposition’s tactics to discredit and weaken the action of the Executive.
The pivot of the PSOE during the last two electoral campaigns has been to present itself as a far-right containment dam, which from the Netherlands to Finland is going through its best moment in recent decades. In this sense, the President of the Government stated in an interview on TVE that in the last elections “a party ball was saved” making explicit reference to the “far-right Government of Italy.”
The transalpine foreign minister, Antonio Tajaniwhich is part of the tripartite coalition led by Giorgia Meloni, he responded angrily. “In Spain the extreme left governs. In Italy we have defeated them. We respect the rule of law. Is the same thing happening in Madrid? In Italy the EPP governs, in Spain the secessionists,” the leader of Forza stated through X Italy.
However, Brussels’ great concern about the judicial system is now and for years the blockage on the General Council of the Judiciary. The judges’ body operates with a mandate that has expired since December 2018 due to the Popular Party’s refusal to renew it. In its annual reports on the rule of law, the European Commission has asked to address this democratic anomaly as a “priority.”
Bolaños’ visit coincides with the order recently launched by the former president Carles Puigdemont to Sanchez. According to the Politico portal, the leader of Junts had a talk this week with Manfred Weberleader of the European People’s Party, to whom he conveyed that his party would be willing to vote alongside Feijóo’s PP to overthrow Sánchez with a motion of censure or block the budgets if the Government does not comply with what was agreed during the legislature.