New law planned to clip regions' diplomatic wings

Government wants to approve foreign visits by premiers

The Spanish government wants to keep tabs on what regional authorities do outside national borders. A draft Foreign Service and Action Law is set to reach the Cabinet in the coming weeks, with the overarching goal of ensuring "unity of action," "institutional loyalty" and "coordination."

The ruling Popular Party (PP) aims to ensure that foreign policy remains a prerogative of the central government at a time when Catalonia is threatening to seek international support for its independence drive. Catalan premier Artur Mas has unveiled plans to "internationalize the conflict" if either Madrid or the courts prevent him from holding a sovereignty referendum.

Catalonia is also one of just three regions, along with Andalusia and the Basque Country, which have refused to shut down their foreign offices and transfer employees to the nearest Spanish embassy in order to save money. The government of Catalonia keeps delegations in cities such as New York, where it has sponsored art shows at MoMA and organized Catalan poetry readings by the likes of Lou Reed and Patti Smith.

But this foreign offensive could soon be scaled back. While the Foreign Ministry cannot prevent a regional leader from traveling abroad on an official visit, it will demand to be informed and "recommendations" will be issued regarding the convenience of the trip. Should the recommendation be disregarded, the government could withhold assistance from the relevant Spanish embassy. Any treaties or agreements between Spanish regions and foreign bodies will have to be first approved by Madrid to ensure they do not overstep regional powers of self-rule.

 

Comentar Normas

Para poder comentar debes estar registrado en Eskup y haber iniciado sesión

Darse de alta ¿Por qué darse de alta?

Otras noticias

Avatar
Corresponsal diplomático y de Defensa de EL PAÍS

Últimas noticias

Ver todo el día

Margallo anuncia que el embajador español volverá pronto a Caracas

Miguel González Nueva Delhi

El ministro de Exteriores se muestra "encantado" de recoger el guante de Maduro

Las mafias se lucran con la indolencia de Europa

Pablo Ordaz Catania

La ausencia de una política eficaz de acogida deja a los inmigrantes africanos a merced de redes de traficantes cada vez más poderosas

Situación política en Extremadura

El País Madrid

Intención de voto en las próximas elecciones autonómicas y valoración de líderes

EL PAÍS RECOMIENDA

Michel Houellebecq: “La élite está asesinando a Francia”

El escritor carga contra las clases dirigentes, los errores de la izquierda y los puntos débiles del cristianismo

Por qué necesitamos ‘Juego de tronos’

La serie capta la fascinación y el miedo que hoy siente mucha gente

Lo más visto en...

» Top 50


Webs de PRISA

cerrar ventana