Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

ACROSS AFRICA

African nations need to prepare for potential return of thousands of jihadists

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

DR Congo former child soldiers awarded $10 mn in damages in landmark ruling

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Website roots out "Rotten Apples"

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Putin's press conference, Alabama election, One Planet Summit, Brexit Phase II, Disney & Fox

Read more

#TECH 24

WorldRemit: Helping migrant workers send money back home

Read more

FOCUS

The challenges awaiting the new leader of South Africa's ANC

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Bangladeshi PM calls violence in Myanmar 'unacceptable'

Read more

DOWN TO EARTH

Was 2017 the worst year for the environment?

Read more

ENCORE!

Rhiannon Giddens strikes out on her 'Freedom Highway'

Read more

Europe

Zapatero dissolves parliament ahead of November polls

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2011-09-27

Spain's parliament was dissolved on Monday and an early general election set for November 20, with the ruling Socialists likely to lose by a wide margin. Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero has said he plans to leave politics after the vote.

AFP - Spain dissolved parliament on Monday and officially set November 20 as the date for an early general election which polls predict the ruling Socialists will lose by a wide margin.

Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, who announced last year that he would not seek a third term, said he had no plans to remain in politics after the election.

"A stage is coming to an end, and that stage puts an end to my political activity," he told a news conference after his cabinet passed a decree to dissolve parliament and convene the early election.

Zapatero, 51, announced at the end of July that the next general election, originally slated for March 2012, would be brought forward by four months to November 20.

His popularity has plunged as the unemployment rate soared to around 21 percent, the highest in the developed world, following the collapse of a labour-intensive property boom in 2008.

Zapatero's government has also had to adopt unpopular austerity measures such as cuts to civil servant wages to rein in Spain's public deficit and calm market fears that the country will need a financial bailout.

The conservative opposition Popular Party would capture an absolute majority in parliament while the Socialists would score the worst results in their history if an election were held now, a poll published Monday in Catalan daily El Periodico showed.

The survey put support for the Socialists, in power since 2004, at 31.4 percent while the Popular Party has 46.1 percent support.

Popular Party leader Mariano Rajoy, 56, who lost twice to Zapatero, in 2004 and 2008, has vowed to lower taxes on businesses to revive the economy and fight unemployment if he is elected.

The Socialist candidate for prime minister in the elections, Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba, who served as interior minister and deputy prime minister under Zapatero, has promised to protect education and health care from spending cuts.

The official election campaign period will be between November 4 and 18.

Date created : 2011-09-27

  • SPAIN

    Spanish Prime Minister calls early general election

    Read more

  • SPAIN

    Zapatero will not seek a third term

    Read more

  • SPAIN

    Zapatero unveils fresh budget cuts

    Read more

COMMENT(S)