Spain in the news

Once again, a pretty quiet week in the real-estate sector. Not much real news and certainly nothing new! It’s all bad banks, unemployment and euro bonds again this week so here is a short rundown of some of the other stories in the news this week.

Kings son-in-law in corruption case

Inaki Urdangarin
Inaki Urdangarin

King Juan Carlos’s son-in-law, Inaki Urdangarin, 44, may not have been charged with a crime but he has been named a formal criminal suspect for allegedly receiving €6 million in public money between 2004 and 2006 from regional governments in Mallorca and Valencia to arrange conferences through a nonprofit foundation he ran with a partner. The money was then funneled to for-profit companies which they also controlled.

A lawyer representing Urdangarin has denied media reports that he is seeking to plea bargain in the case that is embarrassing for the monarchy.

Urdangarin has undergone questioning by a judge in Palma, Mallorca. Urdangarin is the husband of King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia’s second daughter, Princess Cristina.

Economic crisis hits media sector

Since the crisis hit in Spain more than 6,000 journalists have lost their jobs, the industry said ahead of the World Press Freedom Day.

“It is the most severe situation journalism in Spain has gone through in all its history,” said Elsa Gonzalez, president of the Spanish Federation of Journalists’ Associations.

“The figures for the last quarter are alarming and the outlook is dark.”

The association, with over 21,000 members, said that 6,234 journalists have lost their jobs since the worst of the financial crisis began in late 2008.

More than 57 media organisations have closed down and 23 have had to make redundancies.

Spain steps up security for ECB meeting

Mario Draghi
Mario Draghi in Spain for ECB meeting

Euro central bank chiefs are meeting in Barcelona today, under tight security, to discuss options for assisting Spain as political efforts to control the public debt show signs of failure.

Passport-free travel has been temporarily suspended from most of Europe and an extra 2,000 police have been brought in to Barcelona to prevent protests which have taken place across the country over the last few weeks.

The conservative government says there is a possibility of activists from other countries joining Spanish demonstrators to protest against austerity measures during the meeting.

The extra security measures, during the high-profile one-day meeting are part of a wider tightening of security as the announcement of a second recession sparks ever larger protests across the country.

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