José Luis Rodriguez Zapatero
José Luis Rodriguez Zapatero
Nudism and wearing nothing more than a swimming-costume in public will be outlawed in Barcelona before the summer (read article in Catalan here, Ara). People will be restricted to publicly going naked or in just a swimsuit in swimming-pools, beaches and adjacent streets only, once a proposed amendment is made to social behaviour regulations. If someone is found to break this local ordinance and refuses to cover up having been asked to do so by the Guardia Urbana, they could be subject to a fine of between €120 and €500. The matter was debated yesterday by the commission charged with ongoing reviews of the 'Ordinance of Coexistence' (Ordenança de Covivència), which decided to modify a regulation to add an article that outlaws public nudism or seminudism in unauthorised spaces of the city. There will now be a series of stages that the new regulation has to go through, including being available for public consideration, but it is forecast that it will be passed in the last plenary session of the current city council, due to take place on March 25th, ahead of the local elections on May 22nd.
Just four months before those council elections, pressure is growing within the Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE) for prime minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero to announce that he is not going to run for re-election in the national vote in 2012 (read article in Castilian here, La Vanguardia). "The pressure of the 'barons' (influential party members) is very strong on Zapatero for him to announce before the May elections that he will go," a source from the PSOE executive told La Vanguardia. Some within the party, including regional presidents, mayors and local leaders, believe that if Zapatero was going to run again, he would already have announced it, as a way of avoiding uncertainty at the grass-roots level of the party. Therefore, as he hasn't yet shown his hand, they believe that his plan is not to stand and they are calling on him to clarify this position. In this way, there are hopes that the party will avoid the battering at the May elections that is predicted in opinion polls, as well as the forecast defeat in next year's general elections.
Following the unrest in the Girona town of Salt last weekend, that has led to the death of a young Moroccan man when he was running away from the police, immigrant and foreigner organisations in the town have decided to unite for a demonstration planned for tomorrow (read article in Castilian here, El Periodico).The death of Mohamed Reda and the arrest of a man with ultra-right leanings for setting fire to a rubbish container have convinced immigrant groups in the town to come together for the event that is aimed to criticise the riots that occurred last week. "We have to take action so that people don't think that we Muslims are all the same and know that we are against delinquency," said Abderrahaman Boughassall, spokesman for the Joves per Salt (Young people for Salt) group. Boughassall said that the group wants to take part in the demo because immigrants are residents of Salt as well and want peace amongst local inhabitants.