Spain’s parliament backs law to entrench memory of Franco’s victims. A new bill that will memorialize the victims of the previous tyrant Francisco Franco has been passed by the Spanish parliament.
Following a protracted and contentious debate, the bill was approved by 173 MPs on Thursday in the Spanish parliament. With 14 abstentions, 159 MPs voted against the bill in total.
This is Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez’s most recent effort to mend rifts and acknowledge Spain’s history during the civil war of the 1930s and Franco’s tyranny until his death in 1975.
Spain’s parliament backs law to entrench memory of Franco’s victims. The proposed legislation will for the first time designate the hunt for the lost Civil War soldiers as a “state responsibility.”
Approximately 114,000 people are still missing, and civic movements have frequently taken on the task of locating and exhuming the dead.
2019 saw the removal of Franco’s remains from his imposing mausoleum outside of Madrid.
Félix Bolaos, the minister in charge of the bill, declared that it “makes our country a better place and unquestionably turns the page on the darkest time of our history.”
In accordance with the new legislation, Spain will establish a DNA bank to aid in locating, identifying, and mapping out victims of the Franco regime.
As part of the so-called “Law on Democratic Memory,” organizations that promote or laud the dictatorship in Spain will likewise be prohibited.
Any convictions made during the dictatorship on the basis of politics, religion, or sexual orientation will be overturned, and a special prosecutor’s office will be established to look into wartime crimes against humanity.
A 1977 amnesty law prevented previous attempts in Spain to prosecute figures from the Franco era.
The law is scheduled to be approved by the Spanish Senate and is anticipated to be officially adopted later this year.
The main right-wing opposition party, Partido Popular (PP), has frequently charged the administration with wanting to reopen old wounds. If elected in 2023, PP promises to overturn the new law.
In 2007, the former socialist government of Spain adopted a bill aimed at “historical memory,” but former PP Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy did not support it.
The far-right Vox party said the new law will “split Spaniards once again” in a heated debate on Thursday, while the liberal Ciudadanos party blamed the government of favouring a “selective memory” law.
After PM Sanchez made concessions to the Basque Bildu party, which is regarded as the ETA’s political wing’s replacement, opposition to the law has increased.