Communities governed by the PP have threaten to undermine the new abortion law (read article in Castilian here, La Vanguardia). Navarra, Murcia, Madrid and Galicia announce new obstacles in compliance with the new law on sexual and reproductive health. Several autonomous communities governed by the right, mainly the PP but also the UPN, announced new obstacles in compliance with the new law, although it was put in to force pending an appeal from the TC. Ramón Luis Valcárcel, president of the community of Murcia, speaking at the end of the National Board meeting said "there is still no reason to obey the law." He spoke of the constitutional complaint lodged by the PP and more immediately, the request for suspension by his party on which the TC has yet to pronounce on. In Madrid, the spokesperson from the PP for the regional assembly, David Perez, who expressed discomfort for his party and his government with the new law. "It is inhumane, unconstitutional and unfair." The education secretary for the PP, Sandra Moneo, acting as spokesperson for the party said yesterday that they will "make every effort to give women an alternative to abortion when they become pregnant against their will." In Valencia, Juan Cotino, third vice-president of the Consell requested that the Constitutional Court (TC) halt the implementation of the law because "it opens the door to abortion on demand" and said the state standard is in contradiction to the one approved by the Valencian government. In a bid to try and settle the controversy, José Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, referred to the full legal guarantees of the new law in an attempt to censure the PP. In Brussels, the Minister of Health Trinidad Jiménez, said that conscientious objection does not change the slightest thing with the new law and said that the vast majority of the Spanish regions "are all absolutely prepared to enter into force the normal law." Trinidad went on to explain that the legislation aims to "have equal treatment in all regions, as there was inequality between them."
The arrival of hot air from Africa have sent the temperatures up to 40º (read article in Castilian here, El Periodico). The heat wave will be concentrated particularly in Andalusia, Extremadura, Castilla, Aragon, Lleida and Tarragona but temperatures reached 35º on the coast of Catalunya yesterday. The heat is thought to last until the weekend with Cordoba and Badajoz seeing temperatures reaching 40º yesterday. The desert air will rise slowly northward reaching Catalunya tomorrow and Thursday but will stay until Saturday. The Meteorological Agency (Aemet), issued warnings yesterday for the next few days, most notably the high risk of temperatures above 40º in Andalusia and Extremadura with moderate risks for Castilla-La Mancha, Castilla and Leon Aragon and large areas of the provinces of Lleida and Tarragona. Despite the arrival of the first heat wave this summer, neither the Servei Català de Meteorologia (Meteocat) or the Coordinació Operativa de Catalunya (Cecat) have followed the example of Aemet and issued warnings or put into place any civil protection plans for elevated temperatures. Aemet issue notices for hazardous weather conditions when extreme temperatures exceed the daily maximum of 98 percent of the recorded historical data for three consecutive days. In southern and central Spain risk warnings have already been issued in areas like Segovia, Salamanca and Madrid with councils advising that the sick, elderly and young-children stay out of the sun from noon until 6pm. Thursday is thought to be the hottest day in Catalunya but temperatures are not meant to exceed 35º. In fact the region has not seen temperatures go under 30º since Sant Joan and most districts has not seen a drop of rain for three weeks. Temperatures are not thought to reach the record-breaking heights of mid-August last year, where in the city of Barcelona saw temperatures hit between 34º and 37º for four consecutive days.
The conversion of the pet shops on the Rambla is to start after a seven year debate (read article in Castilian here, El Periodico). The pet and bird shops, some of which have been in business for 150 years on La Rambla have been non-compliant with conditions under which animals are sold since 2003. The first deputy mayor, Jordi William Carnes, said the future of the 11 stalls has been decided with only one of the shops remaining open, due to the fact that it was the last in the allocation of new licenses and therefore has not yet entirely closed. Among the new laws that has moved this into effect is that 2003, new law regarding the protection of animals and another decisive factor has been the new modification of new bylaws regarding municipal markets that established new criteria for selling animals and which promised to resolve the issue by the December 2009. Jordi William Carnes, went on to stress that the stalls will not be allowed to sell tourist souvenirs and pointed to the flagship stall that had already been converted into a pastelería. Another stall is due to be converted into an ice-cream parlor. The price for conversion is to be meet by both the stall-holder and the ayuntamiento, with both playing half the costs. Most of the stands will finish their renovations over the summer with all of them hoping to be converted by October. Lourdes Molina, owner of the newly-opened pastelería said yesterday, "I really wanted to change," although her family have sold birds, turtles, squirrels, chinchillas and fish for decades. Others were not so postive, Mònica Trias, president of the pajarerías, was somewhat more cautious and melancholy. "It's not something we do with pleasure. We do this because they force us."
Also in the news: Barcelona has imposed 212 fines this year for throwing cigarettes on the floor (read full article in Castilian here, El Periodico). Mayor Jordi Hereu has called for state regulation on the proposed €1 tourist tax (read full article in Castilian here, La Vanguardia).