Pedro Sanchez will keep the alarm state definitely until May 9. It will do so without consulting the Conference of Presidents, even though you promised to do it when, at the beginning of last November, he asked Congress for a six-month extension for the situation of constitutional exceptionality. Then, it only reached an agreement with the political groups in exchange for a review after the first four months and a joint decision with the presidents of the Autonomous Communities.
When the Executive decreed the third state of alarm of the pandemic by Covid -the second, it was imposed on Madrid during the worst series of clashes with the president Isabel Diaz Ayuso– He anticipated his plan that, after the first 15 days of validity allowed by the Law, the extension granted by the Lower House would be six months.
So all the groups, from the PP to their own ERC parliamentary partners, rebelled against the petition and they even negotiated the no in the plenary session of the Congress. Finally, the Government promised that Sánchez would only maintain the alarm, after four months, if the Interterritorial Health Council considered so and the decision was validated in a Conference of Presidents.
In addition, the president promised to appear every two months in the Chamber to give an account of the epidemiological situation, that its Minister of Health – now minister – did it every month and that the duration of six months was left in the hands of the so-called “co-governance” with the CCAA. But as the spokesman minister, María Jesús Montero, has confirmed, “there is nothing to advise lifting the state of alarm, and we cannot rush into de-escalation.”
Sánchez before Congress
That appearance will be held this Wednesday, before the weekly control session in Congress. President Sánchez “will report on the epidemiological situation and the state of alarm decreed four months ago,” the spokeswoman admitted.
When it was decreed, at the end of October, “We had 362 accumulated incidence cases”, and now we are at 252. “The decree reinforced the co-governance of the Interterritorial Council and gave the regional presidents the ability to restrict mobility.” According to the Government, “it has taken a lot of work to stabilize the cases, but now we cannot lower our guard.”
The Government welcomes that Spain is “coming out of extreme risk”, but the current one maintains that “it is still a figure that worries the scientific community.” For this reason, this Council of Ministers has served to announce that the Government has already decided to continue with the state of alarm, skipping their commitments to democratic control.
“Until we get to less than 50 cases for every 100,000 inhabitants, we cannot take relaxation measures in our mobility and coexistence, “defended Montero.
According to Montero, the goal is “consolidate the drop in the numbers of infections” and not anticipate a “relaxation of restrictive measures” until Spain does not reach 50 cases per 100,000 inhabitants of accumulated incidence in 15 days. “Only then will it make sense to withdraw the powers to restrict mobility that the competent delegated authorities have right now, which as the alarm decree is the regional presidents.”
40 years of 23-F
The minister spokesperson has also made reference to the acts of the 40th anniversary of 23-F this Tuesday in Congress. According to the government, that coup “wanted to take us back to a past that some still longed for”. But the Spaniards at the time did not want to “and still do not want to.” For the Executive, in these decades “democracy has been strengthened, the welfare state has been extended, which allows us to be equal unless in the basic, and we have converged with Europe.”
In any case, “we cannot be complacent, because there are things to improve and new challenges to face, even more so after the pandemic that has had such an impact on the social and economic aspects “.
In this sense, Montero has defended the strength of the institutions and, without even referring to the coup of October 1, 2017 in CataloniaYes, he has expressed that “with pride”, that “our constitutional architecture has shown strength”. And that the institutions are now facing “the worst crisis after the war” and that this “highlights the democratic health of the country and the institutions that comprise it.”
But both in her initial intervention and in questions from the press, the spokeswoman has linked the disturbances of these days “especially in the streets of Barcelona” to the independence riots “that seek to give that image in that city”, precisely in the dates on which, for example, the European Parliament must decide on the request for Carles Puigdemont, Toni Comín Y Clara Ponsatí: “The vandalism scenes of recent days are not a reflection of the youth of Spain nor do they have anything to do with freedom of expression,” he said they do remind of other riots in the same city in which the modus operandi was the same“.
This Government, he said, “condemns the acts of looting and transfers its support to the State Security Forces and Bodies.”