Argentine President Milei once again tackles the Spanish Prime Minister

Argentine President Milei once again tackles the Spanish Prime Minister
Argentine President Milei once again tackles the Spanish Prime Minister

Known for his thunderous public declarations, Argentine President Javier Milei demonstrated it again this week. This Thursday, the leader in fact affirmed that Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez was the “ laughing stock of Europe » in diplomatic matters.

He attacked me in all kinds of ways, and when I responded abstractly with an example, he felt targeted and he used the entire state apparatus to respond to the detriment of a beautiful relationship between the peoples of Spain and Argentina “, Javier Milei told local television channel LN+.

And to add: “ Today, it is the laughing stock of Europe in diplomatic matters », added the ultraliberal Argentine president.

Serious diplomatic crisis

These harsh remarks come four days after triggering an unprecedented diplomatic crisis with Spain. Last Sunday, Javier Milei described Begoña Gómez, the wife of Pedro Sánchez, without naming her, as “ corrupted », during a convention of the Spanish far-right party Vox in Madrid.

These declarations led Spain to announce on Tuesday the definitive withdrawal of its ambassador from Buenos Aires. The announcement of this unprecedented diplomatic act was made by the Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs, José Manuel Albares.

“It is an unprecedented fact to see a head of state come to the capital of another country to insult its institutions and to commit clear interference in its internal affairs,” castigated the senior Spanish diplomat, denouncing a fact “unique in the history of international relations”.

Diplomatic crisis between Spain and Argentina after Milei’s controversial statements

The reaction of the Argentine president was not long in coming. On the Argentine channel LN+, this week he described the announcement by Pedro Sánchez’s government as a decision “nonsense from an arrogant socialist”. ” A mistake “ Who “tarnishes the international image of Spain”, he insisted, assuring that he would not withdraw the Argentine ambassador to Spain in response.

“We are maintaining everything as it has been up until now”, he clarified. Refusing once again to present the apologies requested by Madrid, the Argentine leader even went so far on Tuesday as to advise the Spanish Prime Minister to resort to “ a psychologist » and « a good lawyer for his wife “.

Furthermore, the announcement of the withdrawal of the Spanish ambassador to Buenos Aires sparked criticism from the Spanish right-wing opposition. She accused the Spanish Prime Minister of “overplay” and to victimize themselves for electoral purposes, in the run-up to European elections for which the far right is in the ascendancy in the polls. “Sánchez’s electoral interests are not more important than those of Spain and Argentina,” thus denounced, on the social network X, the leader of the Popular Party (PP), Alberto Núñez Feijóo.

An investigation still ongoing

As a reminder, a Madrid judge opened an investigation in mid-April for “ corruption ” And ” Bribery » against Begoña Gómez. When the opening of this investigation was announced, the head of the Spanish government suspended all his activities for five days to consider a possible resignation.

Spain: the suspense is lifted, Pedro Sanchez will not resign

According to the Spanish investigative media The Confidential, this investigation focuses in particular on the professional links established by Begoña Gómez with the Globalia group, at the time when Air Europa, an airline belonging to Globalia, was negotiating to obtain public aid in the face of the Covid-19 crisis. But on Tuesday this week, Spanish media revealed that a report by the Civil Guard concluded that there was no wrongdoing on the part of the Spanish Prime Minister’s wife.

On Wednesday, Pedro Sánchez once again defended the “ honesty » from his wife in the face of Javier Milei’s attacks, but also from the right-wing and far-right opposition which has been multiplying them for weeks on the basis of this investigation. “ I am sure that justice will soon file » the two complaints at the origin of the investigation because “ it’s just an accumulation of hoaxes and defamation “, he said from the podium of the Spanish Chamber of Deputies.

Argentina sinks into recession

The Argentine economy continued its slowdown in March, against a backdrop of severe austerity policies, with a cumulative contraction of -5.3% in the first quarter. Published on Wednesday this week, the monthly index of economic activity (Imae) of the Argentine National Institute of Statistics (Indec), stood at -1.4% in March compared to February. This is the fifth consecutive month of contraction, and -8.4% year-on-year.

The manufacturing industry, construction, and commerce experienced the greatest declines, while agriculture emerged positively, predictable with the impact of recent or current harvests for major agro-export crops (soybeans, wheat). from Argentina.

As a reminder, the government of Javier Milei, in power since last December, immediately applied a drastic budgetary austerity program, with the aim of “ zero budget deficit » at the end of 2024, and thus tame chronic inflation (211% in 2023).

(With AFP)

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